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THE DRAMA 

A Quarterly Review of Dramatic Literature 

August, 1915 



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THE DRAMA 

A Quarterly Review of Dramatic Literature 
Editor, THEODORE BALLOU HINCKLEY 

Advisory and Contributing Editors 

BRANDER MATTHEWS, Columbia University. 

THOMAS H. DICKINSON, University of Wisconsin. 

NATHANIEL W. STEPHENSON, CoUege of Charles- 
t(m. 

GEORGE P. BAKER, Harvard University. 

RICHARD BURTON, University of Minnesota. 

STARK YOUNG, University of Texas. 

S. H. CLARK, University of Chicago. 

BENEDICT PAPOT, Chautauqua Institution. 

PubUshed by 

The Drama League of America 

736 Marquette Building 

Chicago 

75c A Number $3.00 A Year 

Copyright. 1914, by Drama League of America 

Entered as eecond-clMs matter February 25, 1911, at the postofflce at 
Chicago, Illinoia, under the Act of March 8, 1879. 



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THE DRAMA 

Number 19 AUGUST 1915 

CONTENTS 

A LETTER CONCERNING ATJGIER, by 
Eugene BHeux 353 

THE MARRTAGE OF OLYMPE, by ^Emile 
Augier 358 

FiMTTiF. AUGIER, by Barrett Clark 440 

PARSEE DRAMA, by George CecU 459 

THE EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR, by 
Arthur Pollock 468 

FRANK "WEDEKIND, by Frances Fay 479 

DEPERSONALIZING THE INSTRUMENTS 
OF THE DRAMA, by Huntley Carter 495 

JAMES SHIRLEY, DRAMATIST, a review 
by Charlton Andrews 506 

PLAYING HAMLET AS SHAKESPEARE 
STAGED IT IN 1601, by Charlotte Porter. . 511 

CmEF CONTEMPORARY DRAMATISTS, a 
, review by Alfred K. Eddy 527 

THE SHAKESPEARE TERCENTENARY, 
Percival Chubb 531 

BECENT MAGAZINE ARTICLES ON THE 
DRAMA 537 

A SELECTIVE LIST OF ESSAYS AND 
BOOKS ABOUT THE THEATRE AND OF 
PLAYS pnbUshed during the second quarter 
of 1915, compiled by Frank Chouteau Brown 538 



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The Drama for November will be a notable nnm- 
ber. Babindranath Tagore will contribute an article 
on the stage that crystallizes much of the present 
diverse generalization, especially in discossions of 
stagecraft Jnlins Brouta, perhaps the most cele- 
brated drama critic of Spain, will write of the work 
of Benavente, a brilliant Spanish playwright of to- 
day. A puppet play of Benavente, the popular Los 
Interessos Creados, will be printed in its entirety. 
The New Stage Art in its Relation to Drama wUl 
be considered from a new point of view by Alice Cor- 
bin Henderson. The articles begun in the present 
number, Playing Hamlet as Shakespeare Staged It 
in 1601, by Charlotte Porter, and The Evolution of 
the Actor, by Arthur Pollock, will be concluded. 

In November also will appear what promises to be 
one of the most important pieces of dramatic poetry 
ever written in America, Edwin Arlington Bobin- 
son's Ben Jonson Entertains a Man from Strat- 
ford. In beauty of verse, in poetic vision, and in its 
appreciation of the fine human quality of Shake- 
speare the poem is a leading feature of the Shake- 
speare Tercentenary Celebration. 



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THE DRAMA 

A Quarterly Review of Dramatic Literature 
No. 19 August 1915 



A Letter from Eugene Brieux to Barrett H. Clark to 

be used in The Drama and as a preface 

to a volume of four plays by 

EMILE AUOIEB 
Monsieur et cher Confrere: 

As I had occasion to explain to you when yon 
were planning the present volume, I can see among 
the various reasons for the success which it will 
achieve, that it is above all a timely book, introduc- 
ing as it does the work of Emile Augier to the Amer- 
ican public at the moment when the evolution of the 
taste of that public is directed precisely toward that 
form of dramatic art which is exemplified by the 
author of Le Gendre de M. Poirier. No longer con- 
tent merely with dramas of adventure and plays in 
which sensational incidents and arbitrary develop- 
ment render them close akin to the newspaper serial 
or the fairy-tale, this public has ceased looking to 
the theater solely as an amusement, a pleasant 
recreation and distraction from its daily occupa- 
tions; it is now interested in miore complex prob- 
lems ; it is willing to listen to argoments — a process 
more taxing possibly than the other, but conse- 

353 



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354 A LETTER CONCERNING AUGIER 

quently only the more fascinating. Avid of progress 
and bent on the quest of the most recent and most 
profound manifestations of thought, it cannot fail 
at this time to be interested in the theater of ideas. 
Indeed, as the drama of Ibsen has already attracted 
the attention of this public, it is certain that there 
existed some other transitional form of dramatic art 
between that drama and the drama which was first 
presented in America. 

Each epoch has its particular way of thinking and 
its particular plays. Our epoch is that of the social 
play. 

The material progress of civilization, reducing the 
distance and obstacles which hitherto separated 
nations, has resulted in bringing us closer to each 
other, arousing our common interests, stimulating 
those mental and spiritual qualities which unite the 
Old World with the New. Art is in my opinion only 
that sympathetic note which we seek in those who 
not many years ago were total strangers to us. 

You have made a most wise and careful choice 
among the works of Emile Augier. 

Le Gendre de M. Poirier, his most celebrated 
comedy, together with Le Mariage d^Olympe and 
Les Fourchambault, set forth and defend principles 
which cannot but find favor in the United States. 

Le Gendre de M. Poirier may be compared with 
an exciting knightly tournament, in which the con- 
testants represent the two forms of nobility: that 
of the heart or spirit, nobility pure and simple, and 
that of caste. The first triumphs over the other, 
yet without crushing it — as is just and fitting. An- 
toinette Poirier, having succeeded in arousing the 
enthusiasm and admiration of her husband, the Mar- 
quis de Presles, to the point where he renders her 
the highest possible homage (he acknowledges that 



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A LETTER CONCERNING AUGIER 355 

in her heart he has found that of his mother the 
Marquise) exclaims, wounded and yet radiantly 
happy in the full consciousness of her legitimate 
pride : * * I have my own mother ^s heart I ' * 

This play then sums up in these two speeches — 
one uttered by the representative of individual pride, 
the other by the representative of traditional haugh- 
tiness (which may occasionally hide but never de- 
stroy) — ^the essential qualities of the aristocracy. 

Here is depicted that struggle, intelligent, cour- 
teous, tender, too, between Race and Caste, with 
Honor balancing in the scales. In short, here we 
are able to observe commonsense, sentiment, and 
French good-humor finally at swords '-points with 
traditional pride and all its concomitant sophis- 
try, achieving a triumph; a triumph, however, over 
what is conventional and superficial in this ancient 
pride, for it respects and honors the prestige and 
greatness of the past, and even admits the charm 
of aristocratic idiosyncrasies. 

Finally, as a sort of compensation due us for the 
exaggerations of the Naturalistic School, there is 
not a single odious personage in this lively and 
natural comedy, for Madame de Monjay is only a 
theatrical utility, which Emile Augier took pleasure 
in relegating far into the background. 

As for the Marquis de Presles, he is exquisitely 
French, and his purely superficial faults scarcely 
detract from his charm in the eyes of the Poirier- 
Verdelet partnership. Nor do the petty meannesses 
of these old gentlemen greatly lower them in our 
eyes — ^what a valid excuse they have I 

After this optimistic and charming play it was 
needful to select one showing Emile Augier imder 
his severest aspect. You have done this in choosing 
Le Mariage d^Olympe. 



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356 A LETTER CONCERNING AUGIER 

Emile Augier has always stood for the great mid- 
dle-dass. Its ideals are order and regolarity, jus- 
tice, the hearth and home. He considers from a 
tragic point of view what Moliere laughed at in order 
not to cry over, and he stands forth as champion 
against every peril which threatens to destroy con- 
jugal happiness. 

His middle-class honesty prevented his sentiment- 
alizing over the lot of the prostitute; in his plays 
he proves himself her constant enemy. His Olympe 
is the exact counterpart of Marguerite Gautier in 
La Dame aux Camelias: she is a cynical and in- 
sidious being, whom unhoped-for good fortune has 
not succeeded in overthrowing. 

Having made her way by subterfuge into society 
and the intimacy of the family circle, she does not 
seek redemption. Seized with a homesickness for 
her vile past, she makes use of her position only to 
wreck the happiness of those about her, up to the 
day when the gentleman of the old school, whose 
nephew she has caught in her wiles and married, 
puts an end to her in an excess of indignation. 

In Les FourchambauU we observe the struggle 
between ambition and material interests on the one 
hand, and natural impulse and the nobility of the 
spirit on the other. In every scene Emile Augier 
maintains his antipathy to fortunes which — ^when 
they are not honorably acquired — ^are merciless 
weapons directed against weaker human beings, or 
when they are utilized for ends to which our reason, 
our commonsense, and our love of justice, are 
radically opposed. 

The sordid, petty, and ambitious Madame Four- 
chambault, her husband, Bernard and his mother, 
are synthetic figures, types of humanity in general, 
thrust into the midst of social drama. 



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A LETTER CONCERNING AUGIER 367 

Emile Augier was great as an observer of the 
society of his day. Weary of the conventional 
romantic, superannuated drama, of religious and his- 
torical themes, he preferred to treat those questions 
which the life of his time always furnishes to the 
dramatist. 

The powers of good and evil have since Augier's 
day changed in the matter of terminology together 
with the methods of treating them as material for 
drama. He was among the first to realize that an 
individual, face to face with questions of physiolog- 
ical and social heredity, was quite as poignant a 
subject for study as the legendary hero pursued by 
the Ananke of antiquity. The plays of the present 
are consequently more attractive to us than are 
those of early times, because of the interest aroused 
by the discussions which they raise, discussions 
which we can immediately assimUate and allow to 
react on our consciousness as living beings. 

Such then are the questions treated in the plays 
of Emile Augier which this volume offers to the 
American public. I am delighted. Monsieur, to join 
you in rendering homage to the memory of a master 
whom I hold to be one of the greatest of that line 
in which I am proud and happy to consider myself 
as a dramatist and a French writer. 

Yours, etc 

Bbiextx. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

A PLAY IN THREE ACTS 

By EioiiB AuoiEB 
Translated by Barrett H. Clark. 



Fbbsoks Refrbsbkted 

Mabquis ds PUTOntOK. 

Henbi de Putoibok. 

Babok de Moktbiohabd. 

Baudel de Beaus^joub. 

Adolphe. 

Mabquise de Pttyoibon. 

Genevieve de Wubzsk. 

Pauline. 

Ibma. 

The scene of the first act is laid at Pilnitz and that 
of the second and third acts in the home of the Mar- 
quis de Puygiron at Vienna. 



358 



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THE MARRIAGE OF 
OLYMPE 

By Emilb Auoibb 

ACTI 

The scene is the conversation-room at PUnitz, a 
watering-place. There are three large arched en- 
trances at the back, opening upon a garden; a divan 
is in the center; to the right stands a table with 
numerous newspapers on it; to the left is a smaU 
tea-tahle. 

As the curtain rises, the Marquis de Puygiron is 
seated by the table to the left, Montrichard on the 
divan, facing the audience; Baudel de Beausejour is 
likeivise on the divan, but only his legs are seen by 
the audience. 

MoNTBiGHABD. [Reading his guide-booh.] '^Pil* 
nitZy nine kilometers south-east of Dresden, snmmer 
residence of the Court. Castle . . . Natural 
waters . . . Magnificent baths . • . Casino • . •" 
[Throunng down the book.] Palpitating with inter- 
est, that little book ! 

Mabquis. Tell me, M. de Montrichard — ^you are a 
great authority on modem France — ^who is MUe. 
Olympe Tavemy t An actress t 

MoKTBiCHABD. No, M. le Marquis, she is one of 
the most luxuriously and frequently kept women in 
Paris. How does it happen that her fame has 
reached Pilnitzt 

359 



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360 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Mabquis. The Constitutionnel announces her 
death. 

MoKTBiOHABD. Is that poBsiblet A girl cf 
twenty-five ! Poor Olympe I 

Baxtdbl* [Rising from behind the divan.] Is 
Olympe deadt 

MoNTBiGHABD. [After looking for the person who 
is speaking.] Did Monsieur know herf 

Baudel. [Embarrassed.] Just as — everyone did 
— ^hm — ^yes, very welL 

MoNTBioHABD. What was the cause of her death t 

Mabquis. Here's the item: [He reads.] **Chir 
California correspondent writes, * Yellow fever has 
just claimed as its victim one of the most charming 
of our young compatriots, Mile. Olympe Tavemy. 
A week after her arrival in San Francisco she met 
her death.'*' 

MoNTBiGHABD. What the devil was she doing in 
California? She had an income of ten thousand 
francs 1 

Baudel. Which she must have lost in invest- 
ments. 

MoNTBiGHARD. [To the Marquis.] It has always 
seemed to me the most cruel injustice that these 
happy young creatures should be exposed to so 
serious an accident as death, the same as honest 
women. 

Mabqttis. That is the only possible way for them 
to make regular their position in society. But what 
surprises me is that the papers give her long death- 
notices. 

MoKTBiOHABD. [At the right of the table.] Yon 
have been absent from France for some time, have 
you not, M. le Marquis t 

Mabqttis. Since the Vendee — 1832. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 361 

MoNTBioHABD. There have been great changes in 
twenty-two years. 

Mabquis. So I imagine: then things were going 
from bad to worse. But — ^the devil ! — ^then, at least, 
there was some sentiment of public modesty. 

MoNTBiGHABD. What Can public modesty do in the 
face of facts t The existence of this class of women 
is one of the facts I refer to. These women have 
passed out of the lower strata of society and come 
into the broad daylight. They constitute a little 
world of their own which makes its orbit in the rest 
of the universe. They go about, give and attend 
dances, have families, and gamble on the Bourse. 
Men don't bow to them as yet when they are with 
mothers or sisters, but they are taken none the less 
to the Bois in open carriages; in the theater they 
occupy prominent boxes — ^and the men are not con- 
sidered brazen. 

Baudel. Exactly. 

Mabqtjis. That's all very curious. In my day the 
boldest man would never dream of parading himself 
in that wayl 

MoNTBiOHABD. Well, in your day this new social 
circle was still in the swamp ; now it 's dried up, if not 
thoroughly renovated. You used to hunt in high-top 
boots, buckled up to the belt; now we walk about in 
pumps. Streets have been cut through, squares, 
whole residential sections. Like the city of Paris, 
society takes in new suburbs every fifty years. This 
latest is the Thirteenth Arrondissement. Do you 
know, these women have so strong a hold on the pub- 
lic that they have even been made the heroines of 
plays t 

Mabqtjis. In the theater! Women who— t And 
the audience accepts thatf 

MoKTBiGHABD. Without a murmur — ^which proves 



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362 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

that having made their entr^ into comedy, they have 
done likewise into correct society. 

Mabquis. Yon conld knock me down with a 
feather I 

MoNTBiOHABD. Then what have you to say when 
I tell yon that these ladies manage to get married? 

Mabquis. To captains of industry? 

MoKTBioHABD. No, indeed — ^to sons of good fami- 
lies. 

Mabqttis. Idiots of good families I 

MoKTBiOHABD. No, uo. The bane of our day is 
the rehabilitation of the lost woman — ^fallen woman, 
we say. Our poets, novelists, dramatists, fill the 
heads of the young generation with romantic ideas 
of redemption through love, the virginity of the soul, 
and other paradoxes of transcendental philosophy. 
These young women must become ladies, grand 
ladies 1 

Mabquis. Grand ladies t 

MoKTBiOHABD. Marriage is their final catch; the 
fish must be worth the trouble, you see. 

Mabquis. [Rising.] Good God I And the father- 
in-law doesn't strangle a woman in a case of the 
sort! 

MoNTBiOHABD. [Also fising.] What about the 
law, M. le Marquis t 

[Baudel rises and walks slowly forward to the left.] 

Mabquis. Devil take the law then! If your laws 
permit such shame to fall upon good fandlies, if a 
common prostitute can tarnish the honor of a whole 
family by marrying one of its drunkard sons, it is 
the father's right to take his name from the thief 
of his honor, even if it were glued to her skin like 
Nessus' tunic. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 363 

MoNTBiOHABD. That 's rather a brntal form of jus- 
tice for the present age, is it not, M. le Marquis f 

Mabquis. Possibly, but I am not a man of the 
present age. 

Baudel. But, M. le Marquis, suppose the woman 
in question does not drag her stolen plumage in the 
gutter t 

Mabqihs. I cannot admit the hypothesis, Mon- 
sieur. 

Baudel. Is it not possible that she should like to 
give up her former life and want to lead a quiet and 
pure existence f 

Mabqihs. Put a duck on a lake among swans, and 
you will observe that the duck regrets its mire, and 
will end by returning there. 

MoKTBicHABD. Home-sickucss for the mudl 

Baudel. Then you don't believe in repentant 
Magdalenst 

Mabqtjis. I do— in the desert. 

[The Marquise and Genevieve come in through the 
archway.] 

Mabquis. Shh! Messieurs, beware of chaste 
ears! 

MoKTBiOHABD. And how are Mme. la Marquise 
and Mile. Genevieve? 

Mabquise. Much better, thank you. Monsieur. — 
Have you seen the papers, dear! 

Mabquis. Yes, dear, and I am now at your dis- 
posal. 

GENEViivB. No news from Turkey, grandfather? 

Mabquis. No, my child. 

MoNTBiGHABD. Are you interested in the war. 
Mademoiselle t 

Oekevieve. I should so like to be a man and fight ! 

Mabquise. Hush, child. 



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364 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

OBNSviivB. I'm not so stupid— or if I am, I owe 
it to you, grandmother. — ^You shouldn't hlame me ! 

Mii^uisB. [Tapping GenevUve gently on the 
cheek, then going toward her husband.] Coming to 
the spring, TancrMet It's time. 

MiJRQXTis. Very well. [To the others.] We in- 
valids are here to take the waters. — ^My arm, Mar- 
quise. And you lead the way, granddaughter. {To 
his wife.] Sleep better t 

Mabqxjisb. [To her husband.] Almost well; and 
yout 

Mabquis. So did I. [They go out Moktbichabd 
escorts them to the door and returns.] 

Baudel. [To Montrichard.] I am delighted, 
Monsieur, to have made your acquaintance. 

Moktbichabd. When did I have the honor. Mon- 
sieur 1 

Baudel. Why — ^here — ^just now 

Moktbichabd. The few words we exchanged to- 
gethert Good Lord, you are a quick acquaintance- 
maker! 

Baudbl. I have known you a long time, by repu- 
tation. I have always wanted to be counted among 
your friends. 

Moktbichabd. That's too good of you! Though 
my friendship is not a temple of etiquette, people do 
not as a rule enter it unannounced. [To himself.] 
Who is the fellowt 

Baudel. [Bowing.] Anatole de Beausejour 

Moktbichabd. Slight of Malta t 

Baudel. I confess it. 

Moktbichabd. Fifteen hundred francs — and what 
did the title of Beausejour cost youf 

Baudel. Two hundred thousand in land. 

Moktbichabd. Dear enough. You deserve an- 
other — a little less expensive. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 365 

Baudel. Ha, ha I Goodl Baudel, Monsieur, is my 
patronymic. 

MoNTBiOHABD. Baudelf Just as the Montmor- 
ency were called Bouchard. I seem to have heard 
your name somewhere before, Monsieur. Didn't 
you apply for membership in the Jockey Club last 
yeart 

Baudsl. I did. 

MoKTBiGHABD. And you were refused because you 
were— one moment ! — ^because your father was a mil- 
liner t 

Baudel. He financed the concern: partner of 
Mile. Aglae. 

MoNTBiOHABD. Partner, yes. Well, Monsieur, if 
I were your father's son I should call myself merely 
Baudel. It's no disgrace to be bald; only when one 
wears a wig does one run the risk of appearing 
ridiculous, M, de Beausejour. And so— your very 
humble 

[He is about to leave.] 

BAUimL. [Intercepting him.] Monsieur, the es- 
tate of Beausejour is situated on the road to Orleans, 
thirty-three kilometers from Paris, Could you tell 
me where Montrichard liesf 

MoNTBiOHABD. [Returning to Baudel.] Three 
impertinent fellows have asked me the same question. 
To the first I replied that it was situated in the Bois 
de Boulogne;* to the second, in the Bois de Vincen- 
nes;* to the third, in the Forest of St. Germain.* I 
accompanied each of these three sceptics to the duel- 
ling grounds; they returned convinced — ^grievously 
convinced — so convinced that no one has since dared 
repeat the question. I trust. Monsieur, that you no 
longer desire the information t 

* Famoiu places for duelling. 



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366 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Baudel. Yon refer to pleasure parties on yonr 
estates, I take itt Yon forget, perhaps, that there 
are other places for snchf Spa, Hombnrg, Baden, 
and — Pilnitz! 
MoKTsiOHABD. Monsienr then insists on a wonndt 
Baudel. Yes, Monsienr, I need one. I have 
arranged this little conversation with that end in 
view. 

[They sit down at the table.] 

MoNTRiCHARD. Very Well, M. BandeL Bntlwam 
yon that yon have already an inch of steel in yonr 
arm. Ti^e good care that the weapon goes no 
deeper! 

Baudbl. I am fnlly aware that Monsienr is the 
best swordsman in Paris. Yonr blade stands you in 
good stead of everything, including a genealogy. 

MoKTBiOHABD. Two iuches. 

Baudel. Of an ambiguous title, relying entirely 
upon chance. You have by your bravado and your 
cleverness made an entree into the world of fashion 
and high life ; you are even one of the leaders in that 
world, where you always behave like a perfect gen- 
tleman: spending generously, never borrowing— a 
good gambler, a good comrade, a dead shot, and a 
gallant knight. 

MoNTBiGHABD. Three inches. 

Baudel. Unfortunately, however, you have re- 
cently lost your luck. You are now without a sou, 
and are looking for fifty thousand francs with which 
to tempt fortune once again. You cannot find the 
money. 

Montbiohabd. Five inches I 

Baudel. I shall loan you that amount 

Montbiohabd. Ha I 

Baudel. Now how many inchest 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 367 

MoNTBioHABD. That depends on the conditions 
yon make. Yon have conditions? 
Baudel. Yes. 

MoNTBiOHABD. Speak, M. de Beansejonr. 
Baitdel. It's qnite simple: I shonld like 

MOKTBIOHABD. Whatt 

Batjdsl. The devil! It's not so simple as it 
seemed. 

MoKTBiOHARD. I am very intelligent! 

Baudel. Monsienr, I have an income of a hun- 
dred and twenty-three thousand francs. 

MoKTBiOHARD. You are fortunate. 

Baudel. No, I am not. I have received a gentle- 
man 's education and I have aristocratic instincts. 
My fortune and my breeding call me to the more 
brilliant realms of society 

MoNTBiOHABD. And your birth stands in your 
way. 

Baudel. Precisely. Every time I knock at the 
door it is closed in my face. In order to enter and 
to remain, I must fight a dozen duels. Now I am no 
more of a coward than the average man, but I have 
a htmdred and twenty-three thousand reasons for 
wanting to live, while my adversary as a rule would 
have oBJy thirty or forty thousand. It's not too un- 
evenly matched. 

MoKTBicHABD. I Understand: you want to earn 
your spurs once for all, and you turn to mef 

Baudel. That's it. 

MoKTBiGHABD. But, my dear Monsieur, my in- 
serting an inch of steel into your arm will not prove 
that you're a good swordsman. 

Baudel. That is not exactly 

MoKTBiOHABD. Then what-- — f 

Baudel. It's rather a delicate matter to explain. 



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368 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

MoNTBiOHARD. Say it out — ^let ns be frank. 

Baudbl. You are right: I propose a bargain. 

MoKTBiCHABD. For whatt You remind me of a 
bottle of that sort of champagne that takes a quar- 
ter of an hour to blow the cork out 1 Good God, man, 
ask for a corkscrew I 

Baxjdel. Monsieur, your device is Cruore dives, 
isn't itt 

MoNTBiOHABD. Yos, Mousicur, Cruore dives; En- 
riched by his hlood. This was not my own inven- 
tion : it was given by Louis XIV to my great-grand- 
father four generations ago; he received eight 
wounds at the Battle of Senef . 

Baudbl. What was the estate worth at the timet 

MoNTBiOHABD. Ouc milliou. 

Baudel. [Lowering his eyes.] Twenty-five 
thousand francs a wound. I am not so rich as Louis 
XIV, Monsieur, but there are wounds and wounds. 
A scratch on the arm, for instance— doesn't that 
seem worth fifty thousand francs t 

MoKTBioHABD. [Severely.] Do you mean you 
wish to buy a wound t You're madl 

Baudhl. Bear in mind that it is more to my in- 
terest than yours to keep the matter a secret. There 
is nothing reprehensible in the arrangement: the 
price of blood has always been an honorable thing. 
Your own device proves that. 

MoNTBiOHABD. [After a moment ^s hesitation.] 
You know, I like you — ^I couldn't for the life of me 
say why — ^but I lie you. It will be very amusing 
to make you a man of the world. I'll take that 
wound from you, but — gratis, you understand? 

Baudbl. [To himself.] That will cost more — 
but I don't mind I 

MoNTBiOHABD. Scud your seconds. 

Baudbl. But the cause of the quarrel f 



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THE MARRIAGE OP OLTMPE 369 

MoNTsiOHABD. YouF name is BaudeL I am said 
to have suggested that you cross the L.* 

Baudsl. Good I Montiichard, a duel to the bit- 
ter end ! 

MoNTBiCHABD. And afterward we shall have a 
house-warming for our new friendship at the Hotel 
du Grand Scanderburg. I shall await your seconds 
here, my dear M. BaudeL 

Battdel. De Beaus^jour. 

MoNTBiOHABD. Ycs, ycs: de Beausejour* [Baudel 
goes out.] There's a queer type I I'll make some- 
thing of him: first a friend — ^very attached — ^with a 

string to his paw 1 This duel is exactly what I 

needed to set me going once again. Montrichard, 
the hour of fate has soimded : the hour of marriage ! 
[He goes to the door, meets Pauline, and hows to 
her.] 

MoNTBiOHABD. Youf You'rc not dead thent 
"Why, the papers are full of it ! 

Pauunb. Doubtless a mistake 1 

MoNTBiCHARD. Arcu't you Olympe Tavemyt 

Paxjukb. Ah, I thought so ! This is not the first 
time I have had the honor to be mistaken for that 
lady. I am the Countess de Puygiron, Monsieur. 

Moktbighabd. a thousand pardons, Madame t 

The resemblance is so striking ! Even your voice 1 

You will excuse me for making so natural a mistake? 
Especially as this is as likely a place to meet Olympe 
Tavemy as the Countess de Puygiron. I beg your 
pardon once more, Madame. 

Paumnb. Of course, Monsieur. I was looking for 
my uncle and aunt here. 

Moktbighabd. They are at the spring. M. le 
Marquis never told me his nephew was married. 

• Th«rel»y maklnff the word "Baadet**: "Aaa." 



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370 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Pauunb. For an excellent reason: he didn't 
know it himself. 

MONTBIOHARD. Ah I 

PAuiiiNE. It's a surprise that my husband and I 
have in store for him. Please be good enough, there- 
fore, not to tell him of our arrival, if you happen to 
see him before we do. Or — ^will you please show me 
the way to the spring f 

MoNTsiGHABD. Do mo the honor of taking my 
arm, Madame. I have the good fortune to be sightly 
acquainted with your family. [Bomng.] Baron de 
Montrichard — ^most pleased to — This is nonsense, 
introducing an old friend 1 

Paulinb. Monsieur! 

MoKTsiGHABD. Are you afraid I'll tellt You 
know I'm always on the woman's side. You and I 
can help each other; in my own interest, if for no 
other reason, I am bound to be discreet on your 
score. 

Paumnb. In what way, M. de— de — ^Montrichard 
can I be fortunate enough to serve youf 

MoNTBioHABD. Ah, you'rc defiant? Do you want 
security! I'm only too pleased. I am thinking of 
marrying: your great-uncle, the Marquis de Puy- 
giron, has a charming grand-daughter. I have just 
made her acquaintance, but have not as yet been re- 
ceived into the family circle. If you will arrange 
that for me and further my suit, I shall see to it that 
whoever has the impertinence to recognize you will 
have to deal with me. 

[He holds out his hand to her. Pauline looks 
quickly about to see whether anyone else is present.] 

Paumnb. [Taking his hand.] How did you rec- 
ognize me f 

MoNTBioHABD. First, your face, then that little 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 371 

pink mark on yonr beloved ivory neck — ^the mark I 
used to adore I 

PAUMira. Do you still remember itt 

MoKTHiOHABD. You wero my only real love. 

Pauline. And yon mine, dear Edouard. 

MoNTRiOHABD. No, no— Alfred — ^you're mixing 
the names. Yonr ''only real love" has had so many 
names I What the devil put it into your head to 
marry? You were very happy before? 

PATjunre. Did you ever happen to notice, when 
you stepped out into the boulevard, that you had left 
your cane in the restaurant? 

MOISTTRIOHABD. YeS. 

Paumnb. And you went back for it. There in 
the private dining-room you saw the wreckage of the 
orgy: candelabra in which the lights were burned 
out; tablecloths removed; a candle-end on the table 
which was all covered with grease and stained with 
wine. Instead of lights and laughter and heavy per- 
fumes, that made the place gay not long since, were 
solitude, silence, and a stale odor. The pieces of 
gilded furniture seemed like strangers to you, to 
everyone, even to themselves. Not a single article 
among all this that seemed familiar, not one was 
reminiscent of the absent master of the house or 
awaited his return. Complete abandon I 

Moktbichabd. Exactly. 

PAinjNB. Well, my life is rather like that of the 
private dining-room. I must be gay or utterly 
lonely — ^there is no possible compromise. Are you 
surprised then that the restaurant aspires to the 
dignity of the home? 

MoNTBiCHABD. Not to mcutiou a certain taste for 
virtue that you must have acquired? 

PAULnrB. You're joking? 

MoNTBiOHABD. No, virtue is for you a new play- 



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372 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

thing, I might ahnost say, forbidden fruit. Let me 
warn you that it will set your teeth on edge. 

Paumnb. We shall see. 

MoNTBicHABD. The career of an honest woman is 
a fearful undertaking! 

Paumnb. It can't compare with oursl If you 
only knew how much energy it required to ruin a 
man! 

MoKTBicHABD. No matter, you are now Countess 
de Puygiron. Now tell me what is the meaning of 
the news of your death in the Constitutionnelf 

Paumnb. A note my mother sent to all the 
papers. 

MoNTBiOHABD. How is good old Irma, by the way t 

Paxjunb. Very well and happy. When I mar- 
ried, I gave her all I had — ^furniture, jewels, income. 

MoKTBiOHABD. That was something of a consola- 
tion for losing you. 

Paumnb. So you see how necessary it was to throw 
people off the scent? Thanks to tMs plan, no one 
will dare recognize Olympe Tavemy in the Countess 
de Puygiron. Now, dear, you know if I had per- 
sisted in not being recognized, you would have re- 
tired with excuses — ^that is, if you hadn't given me 
your security. 

MoNTBiGHABD. Suppose you happen to meet one 
of your friends who taiew of your Uaison with the 
Count? 

Paumnb. No one knew of it. 

MONTBIOHABD. Ah! 

Paumnb. Henri took me seriously from the very 
first. He was most discreet: Didier and Marion 
Delorme, you see ! You must know that I Ve played 
my cards well. I talked of going into a convent; 
then he asked me to marry him and I accepted. I 
pretended I was going to California. Henri met me 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 373 

in Brittany; I married him there a year agO| under 
my real name, Pauline Morin. 

MoNTBioHABD. Is he as big a fool as thatf 

Paxtunb. Yon insulting creature 1 He's a very 
intelligent and charming young man. 

MoKTKiOHABD. Then how does it happen that 
1 

Pauunb. He never had a mistress — his father 
was very severe with him. When he became of age, 
he was as innocent as 

MoNTBioHABD. As you: — ^at the age of fourt 
Poor fellow! 

Paumne. He's not to be pitied ; he's very happy 
with me. 

MoNTBiOHABD. Do you lovc himt 

Pauuns. That is not the question. I strew his 
path with flowers — artificial, perhaps, but they are 
prettier and more lasting than real ones. 

MoNTBicHABD. Truly, do you think the game 
worth the candle f 

Pauokb. So far, I dont WeVe been spending 
ten months alone in Brittany — all by ourselves. For 
the past two months we've been traveling, alone 
again. I can't say that we've been hilarious. I 
live the life of a recluse, going from hotel to hotel; 
with the maids, servants, and postilions, I am 
'^ Madame la Comtesse." All that would be dull 
enough if I hadn't other dreams for the future — ^but 
I have. Now that Olympe Tavemy (God rest her 
soul!) has had time to go to California and die and 
be mourned for in Paris, I can boldly enter society 
by the front door, which the Marquis de Puygiron is 
to open for me. 

MoKTBicHABD. Is your husband going to intro- 
duce you to his undef 



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374 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Pauukb. Indeed he is I But he's not expecting 
the kind of meeting I have planned 1 

MoNTBiOHABD. There's a fine fellow caught in a 
trap! 

Pauuke. It's all for his own happiness I If he 
introduces me as an honest woman, he will not be 
lying: for a year I have been the personification of 
virtue. I have a new skin. 

MoNTBiOHABD. You havc only to shed it, Coun- 
tess I 

Paumnb. Impertinent I — ^Here is my husband I 

[Montrichard walks away and bows ceremoniously 
to Patdine. Henri enters.] 

MoNTBiOHABD. Will you be good enough, 
Madame, to present me to M. le Comtef 

Paumnb. My friend, M. le Baron de Montri- 
chard. 

Hbnbi. [Boiuing.] Monsieur. 

Paumnb. We owe our acquaintance to a rather 
strange accident: M. de Montrichard, when he saw 
me come in, mistook me for — ^you know whom I am 
thought to resemble? 

MoNTBiOHABD. The mistake was all the more in- 
excusable as the person you speak of recently died 
in California, and I do not believe in ghosts. 

Paxtunb. Is the poor creature deadt Well, I 
haven't the courage to mourn her! Let us hope I 
shan't again be mistaken for her! 

Hbnbi. Take care, Madame, perhaps M. de Mont- 
richard feels the loss more keenly than you? 

MoNTBiOHABD. Right, Monsicur, I thought a great 
deal of the lady. Her heart was much above her 
station in Uf e. 

Hbnbi. Aht Doubtless Monsieur was in a posi- 
tion to appreciate her better than anyone else? 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 375 

MoNTBiOHABD. No, MonsieuT, no. My relations 
with her were always of a very brief and friendly 
nature. 

Hknel [Shaking hands with him cordiaUy.] I 
am very glad to have made yonr acquaintance, Mon- 
sieur — ^we must become friends I 

MoNTBicHABD. Monsicur! [To himself.] I feel 
sorry for him! 

[A servant enters.] 

SsBVANT. Two gentlemen who wish to see M. de 
Montrichard. 

MoKTsiOHABD. [To himself.] BaudePs seconds! 
[Aloud.] Goody I shall be with them in a moment. 
[The servant goes out.] I hope, M. le Comte, that 
we shall soon find an opportunity of continuing the 
conversation? — ^Madame I 

Hbnbi. [To himself, as he sees his uncle.] My 
Uncle I 

MoKTBioHABD. [Meeting the Marquis at the 
door.] M. le Marquis, you find yourself in the 
bosom of your family. [He goes out.] 

[The Marquis and the Marquise enter.] 

Mabqtjis. It's Henri! My dear boy, what a sur- 
prise I [He opens his arms; Henri kisses him, then 
kisses the Marquise^ hand.] Three years without 
coming to see us! And not a letter for a whole 
year I How ungrateful of you ! 

Mabquise. What of it? Family affection doesn't 
die out like other affection, through absence or 
silence. Two hundred leagues away, when we were 
both grieving for the same reason, we were together 
in our sorrow. 



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376 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Mabqihs. We expected yon just before your poor 
father's death. We thought you would feel the need 
of being with us. 

[Pauline htis meantime gone to the archway, with- 
out losing sight of the others. She takes off her hat, 
lays it on a chair, then comes forward.] 

Hbkbi. I was very, very lonely and I thought of 
you, but important business affairs 

Makquis. I understand — ^the will and so forth. 
The most painful part of human bereavements is that 
we cannot escape from material worries. Well, here 
you are at last, and we are very happy to see you. 

Mabquise. How did you know we were here? 

Hbnbi. The fact is, I didn't. I expected to meet 
you in Vienna, at the end of my Q^rman tour. 

Mabquis. Heaven bless the chance that brought 
you to us, then ! We have you and we mean to keep 
you. 

Henbi. I should be only too glad to spend some 
days with you, only I was just passing through Pil- 
nitz I I must leave in an hour 

Mabquis. Nonsense I 

Hbkbi. It's a matter of great importance 

Mabquis. What an ideat There can't be any- 
thing to prevent 1 

E^Bi. Excuse me. [He looks toward Pauline, 
who stands near the table. The Marquis watches 
him.] 

Mabqihs. Aht [Aside to Henri.] You're not 
traveling alone ? Well, boys will be boys I [Aloud.] 
If you have only an hour to stay here, let us spend 
the time together at least I Our hotel is just two 
steps from here. Give your aunt your arm. 

[The Marquis takes his hat. Henri offers his arm 
to his aunt; they start for the door.] 

Paumke. I shall wait for you here, Henri. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 377 

Mabquis. [Turning round.] You lack tact, Mad- 
emolBeUel 

HsKBi. [Going to Pauline and taking her hand.] 
Unde, I have the honor to present you to the Coun- 
tess de Puygiron. 

Mabqihss. The Countess de Puygiron? 

Mabquis. Are you married? 

Hekbi« Yes, Uncle. 

Mabquis. [Severely.] How does it happen. Mon- 
sieur, that I, the head of the family, knew nothing 
of this? 

Hbnel Let me postpone an explanation in which 
my self-respect and my duty toward you could not 
but suffer. I did not come to Pilnitz to see you, and 
I have no intention of antagonizing you by my pres- 
ence here. In leaving you, I believe that I am pay- 
ing you all the deference at present due you. 

Mabquis. This has nothing to do with deference, 
Monsieur t In families like ours there exists a solid- 
arity of honor which is not to be trifled with or put 
aside by a caprice. Ask me what I have done with 
our family name and I shall answer that I have 
always borne it with dignity and have never spotted 
it except with my blood. Now I command you to 
give me your account 1 

Hbkbi. Command? When I married Pauline, I 
broke with the family. I therefore have the right to 
be rid of any duty toward it, as I ask none of its 
privileges. 

Mabquisb. Henri, my child, canH you be a little 
more conciliatory? 

Mabquis. Madame, do not believe for an instant 
that it is Henri who is speaking I Can 't you see that 
this spirit of revolt has been put into him by someone 
else? 

Hbkbi. You are mistaken, Monsieur: I respect 



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378 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

what deserves respect. But the prejudices and ab- 
surd conventions, the hypocrisy and tyranny of soci- 
ety — ^nothing could prevent my despising them as 
they deserve to be despised I 

Mabqihs. Whom have you married in order to set 
society at defiance? 

Hbkbi. I prefer not to say. 

Paumnb. Why not, dearest t You must not allow 
your uncle to believe your marriage worse than a 
misalliance I That would kill him t Let me reassure 

him 1 His sense of honor will surely 1 Then we 

may go. 

Henbi. Very well. [He walks away.] 

Pauunb. My name is Pauline Morin, M. le Mar- 
quis ; I am the daughter of an honest farmer. 

Mabquis. You a farmer's daughter? But your 
manners, your language ? 

Pauline. My dear mother gave me an education 
far beyond my rank. 

Mabquis. Possibly! — Come, Marquise. [He 
offers his arm to the Marquise, and they turn to go.] 

Paumnb. Please stay. I should leave if my pres- 
ence is disagreeable to you I 

Mabquis. You really cannot expect to be publicly 
received into a family which you entered in secret! 
[Henri is about to speak.] 

Pauunb. And why not in secret? Tell me what 
you suspect, M. le Marquis? My marriage must 
seem to you a very treacherous and bold stroke. 

Mabquis. That would not be at all necessary with 
a child like Henri I 

Henbi. But she wanted to go into a convent I 

Pauunb. It was a comedy, a cruel comedy! 
Whom could you hope to persuade of my sincerity? 
Who would admit that a girl of low birth, when she 
found in you all the intelligence and goodness of 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 379 

heart she had always dreamed, would give up her 
secret soul to yout You were very simple to believe 
it — ask your uncle. If I had really loved you, would 
I not have refused to become your wifet Would I 
not, M. le Marquis f 

Mabqxtis. Tou would. 

Hbnbl And do you imagine she didn't refuse f 
She made every possible objection that you yourself 
would have made. 

Paulinb. I was defending not only your happi- 
ness, but my own. [Henri sits down at the table.] 
Do you think I had a beautiful dream, M. le Mar- 
quis t If you only knew what I am suffering! But 
I have no right to complain; I anticipated what is 
happening. [To Henri.] I asked God for one year 
of your love in exchange for the happiness of a 
lifetime. He has kept His bargain, and given me 
even a little extra for full measure : for you still love 
me. 

Hbkbi. [His arms extended toward her.] I do 
love you I I love you as much as I did the first days 
of our love. 

Paumnb. Poor dear I Tou don't realize what is 
going on within you I Perhaps I 'm wrong to tell you 
— ^but it's only what you will learn soon enough. 
Tour affection is already waning and you are being 
worn out by the struggle you are making against 
the conventions of society. Tour family traditions, 
which you have shattered, and which you call preju- 
dices, are now rising up one after the other 

Mabquisb. [To her husband.] That's true 
enough. 

Paumnb. Tou are resisting, I know, and you are 
already angry that your happiness is not rewarded 
enough for the sacrifices you are forced to make, but 
every day these sacrifices are greater, and the re- 



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380 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

ward less. When you leave here, you will feel the 
weight of loneliness bearing down on you; you will 
see with other eyes the woman who ought always to 
stand you instead of family, friends, society — and 
before long the regret of what you have given up for 
me will change to remorse. 

Mabqihse. [To her husband.] She doesn't speak 
like a woman who's trying to deceive us I 

Pauunb. But never fear, dearest, the day that 
happens I shall give you back all you have lost for 
my sake, and your love for me will be my whole life. 

Henbi. Who can listen to you and not adore you ? 

Mabqxjise. [To her husband.] Poor woman I 

Paumnb. Goodby, M. le Marquis, and forgive 
me for having the honor to bear your name — ^I am 
paying dear for it 1 

Mabquise. [To her husband.] Say something 
nice to her. 

Mabquis. Only my rigid principles, which I have 
always adhered to, separate us — ^to my regret. 

Pauline. Thank yout I go away proud, for I 
feel that I am at least esteemed by tiie Great Mar- 
quis I 

Mabquis. Do you know my nom de guerref 

Pauline. I am the daughter of a Vendeent 

Henbi. [To himself.] What 's this t 

Mabquise. Daughter of a Vendeenf 

Pauline. Who died with honor on the field of 
battle. 

Mabquis. In what battle ? 

Pauline* Chanay. 

Mabqxhs. I wasn't there, but our men fought val- 
iantly that day! What did you say was your 
father's name t 

Pauline. Yvon Morin. 

Mabquis. I don't recall 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 381 

Pauunb. I scarcely thought you would; he was 
only a common soldier— of your cause. 

Mabquis. We were all equals, made noble by our 
faith. If there had been distinctions it was death 
only that made them I [To Henri.] Why didn't 
you tell me you were marrying the daughter of a 
Vendeenf That's not a misalliance I Your father 
shed his blood with ours. Countess I 

Paumne. Oh, M. le Marquis 1 

Mabquis. Your uncle I [He stretches out his 
arms toward Pauline, who falls into them.] 

Mabquise. [As Pauline kisses her hand.] I was 
sure Henri would not contract a marriage unworthy 
of himi 

Mabqxtis. [To Henri.] Now you won't leave, 
will yout 

Hbnbi. Uncle 

Mabquis. Go if you like, only we shall keep your 
wife. Come to our hotel, Countess ; I should like to 
introduce you to my grand-daughter. This proud 
nobleman will certainly follow you ! 

Hbnbi. Yes, we shall join you soon, Uncle. 

Mabquis. Don 't make us wait too long — ^we shan 't 
sit down to dinner until you come. [He shakes 
hands with Paulvne and Henri and goes toward the 
door.] It's the Lion d^or. [He goes out with the 
Marquise.] 

Hbnbi. Swear to me that you didn't know my 
Uncle was herel Swear — on your life! 

Paulinb. On my life, on my mother I You sus- 
pect something too terrible for words, I know ! 

Hekbi. Forgive me I You can see how I suffer. 
I sometimes even doubt you. This story you seemed 
to invent on the spur of the moment 

Pauijkb. You think it was prepared! 

Hbkbi. I did — ^and my heart sank. 



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382 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Fajtldstb. Poor child 1 You thought I married in 
order to get into the family and become a Countess f 

Hb27bi. Yes. 

Paumkb. That my sole ambition was to climb f 
Oh, Henriy how could you have so low an opinion of 
met 

Hbnbi. Forgive me — ^I'm not at all welL 

Paumnb. I know, and for that very reason I 
wanted you to be with your family once more. My 
love is not enough in itself — ^but rather than have 
you suspect me, I should tell the whole truth to your 
uncle. 

Henbi. It would kill him — ^I know it would kill 
him I [He throws himself upon the divan.] 

Paxjunb. [Sitting beside him.] Then well go 
tomorrow, if this lie is troubling you 

Hekbi. It is. Your intention was good — ^thank 
you for that 1 But I have no right to fly in the face 
of my uncle's prejudices with a lie. Every time he 
shook hands with me, every time you spoke to any 
member of my family, would be an abuse of confi- 
dence for which I should blush. 

Patjmnb. [Embracing him.] We'll go tonight. 
Those clouds on your forehead must disappear, you 
adorable boyl I ask nothing more than to be with 
you, alone I Come now, let us join those people 
whose peace of mind gives you so much worry. 

Hbnbi. You angel I 

Paxjukb. Ah, you have given me wings! [She 
gives him her arm coquettishly. Henri kisses her 
forehead. To herself.] Countess, ah I 



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ACT n 

The scene is in the Marquis ' home in Vienna. The 
spacious family drawing-room is decorated in the 
style of Louis XIII, with recessed waUs, wainscoted 
from top to bottom in carved oak. There are doors 
at the back and at each side; in the recess of the left 
wall is a large fireplace above which hangs a fiM- 
length portrait of the Marquise. On each side of the 
picture is a candelabrum with five candles. In the 
recess to the right is a deepset window. Toward the 
back on the same side is a Venetian mirror. 

As the curtain rises the Mabquise and GBNEVii^ 
are seated embroidering. The Mabquis stands by 
the fireplace. Paumnb is half-reclining on a smaU 
sofa. 

Mabquise. Yon must not forget, Tancrede, that 
we are dining tonight at Mme. de Bansherg's. 

Mabquis. I shan 't forget : yon know I adore Mme. 
de Bansbergl 

Mabquise. And I helieve your affection is re- 
turned 1 If she were thirty years older I might be 
jealous. 

G rnevi^ve . On the contrary, grandmother: 
rather just because she is twenty, it seems to me 

Mabquise. That she is no match for you, who are 
sixty. 

G rneviAve . Do you think the victor is always the 
one with the heavy battalions? 

Mabquise. In matters of friendship, yes. 

Mabquis. I am very grateful to the dear little 
Baroness for the way she welcomed our Pauline. 

383 



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384 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Gbnbvibvb. Then you have reason to be grateful 
to all Vienna, for that matter. 

Mabquis. I don 't deny that. I have been touched 
and flattered, I admit, by her reception here. 

GBKBviifevB. You might ahnost imagine that we 
were concealing contraband goods 1 

Mabquis. I'm foolish, like the ass with the bur- 
den of relics I 

Gbnbvievb. [Rising.] Did you hear that, Paul- 
ine f 

Paumnb. [Emerging from her reverie.] What? 

Gbnbvibvb. [Going to Pauline.] So much the 
worse ! See what you've lost I That will teach you 
to join in the conversation I 

Paumnb. I 'm not feeling well. 

Mabqyjisb. Not yet t 
" Gbnbvibvb. You're never well, are you t 

Paumnb. It's nothing. [To herself.] What a 
bore I 

Mabqihs. [Sitting hy the Marquise.] We made 
you stay up too late last night — ^you 're not used to it I 

Paumnb. That 's so. 

Gbnbvh^. But the party was such fun 1 

PAUMmB. [To herself.] Like a rainy day 1 

Gbnbvibvb. Mme. de Bosenthal is so jolly I She 
breathes an air of gaiety all about her. Such a bril- 
liant soiree I Even the old people at their whist 
must have been excited I 

Mabquisb. My partner, the Chevalier de Falken- 
stein, took my kings every time 

Mabquis. His excuse was Pauline's laughter — ^it 
distracted his attention. 

Gbnbvibvb. A deaf man with a sharp ear I Paul- 
ine didn't move, and she won enormously. 

Mabquisb. Beallyf 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 385 

Paxtlikb. Enormously f A hundred francs, at 
the outside. 

Mabquis. That's good, at a franc a point. But I 
have an idea you don't care for gamblingt 

PAuumB. I don't, M. le Marquis, I don't — [To 
herself.] at a franc a point. 

Oknkvij^ve. Pauline is so serious that I think 
she's bored by all this frivolous society. 

Mabqtjisb. Yes, and she seemed, beforehand, to 
expect a wonderful time I 

Paxtuke. I imagined it was going to be something 
far different from this 1 

Mabquis. You are too serious for your years, my 
dear niece. 

Paxjukb. Perhaps. 

Mabqxjisb. But»so<nety is not altogether a matter 
of frivolity. If you are bored with the young people, 
why don't you talk with the older onest You could 
certainly fbid something worth while to talk about 
with themf 

Paulikb. Madame, I am ashamed to confess that 
the topics of conversation ui society do not appeal to 
me: I am a barbarian. I've lived too long in our 
primitive Brittany. 

Mabqxhs. We shall civilize you, my dear child. 
What is the weather like? 

Gb ubviAvb . [Going to the window.] Superb! 

Mabqttisb. It won 't last. 

Mabquis. Does your wound still pain you? 

Mabqttisb. A little. 

Pauunb. What wound? 

Gbnbvi£vb. [Returning.] You didn't know that 
grandmother was once a soldier? 

Mabqxtis. (JeneviSvel 

GbnbviSvb. [Going to the Marquis.] Did that 
displease you? 



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386 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Maequisb. No, dear. 

Mabquis. You allow her too great liberty — she's 
too familiar with you. 

Mabquise. Familiarity is the small change of ten- 
derness. We are too old to object to that. 

Mabqxtis. Very welL That child speaks to you 
sometimes in a way I shouldn't dare to I 

Genevievb. This is between grandmother and me, 
grandfather. It doesn't concern you. 

Mabquise. Genevieve, you are forgetting your- 
self! 

Genevieve. You're as severe as grandfather. 
Did I annoy you, grandfather? 

Mabqihs. No, dear. With me I allow you certain 
liberties 

Genevi^vb. Then you are as indulgent as grand- 
mother I [She kisses him.] 

Mabquis. That child is twisting us around her lit- 
tle finger. Marquise. 

Genevieve. [Taking a hand of each of her grand- 
parents in her own.] Forgive my little trick ; I only 
wanted to try an experiment. Henri spoke of the 
respect each of you had for the other 

Mabquis. Are you surprised that I respect your 
grandmother T 

Genevieve. Oh no, but I never dreamed how far 
it went I Henri called my attention to it: **How 
beautiful it is," he said, ^Ho see those two lives so 
bound up in each other ! Old age without a blemish ! 
Two hearts that have gone through life inseparable, 
two beings whom the battles of life have brought 
closer together. The head and the saint of the fam- 
ily ' 

Paumnb. [To herself.] Philemon and Baucis I 

GENEvi]fevB. And tears came into his eyes — ^tears 
of admiration and tenderness. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 387 

Mabqxtisb. Dear Henri ! 

Mabquis. He ^8 right, dear — ^your grandmother is 
a saint! 

Mabquibe. [Smiling.] Tancrede, it isn^t your 
place to sanctify me t 

Mabquis. Would you like to hear about that 
wound, Pauline T 111 tell you: the Marquise came 
with me to the Chateau of PenisciSre — ^you know the 
details of that terrible siege! — ^When fire broke out 
and forced us to leave the Chateau, we retreated, 
fighting all the way to a little wood, where we sepa- 
rated after firing our last volley. The Marquise and 
I made our way to a farm-house where we hid. As 
the door opened she fainted, and then I noticed that 
she had been hit by a bullet! [Taking her hand.] 
My dear wife I That wound will be counted among 
your good deeds, in Heaven I 

Mabquisb. I hope not, dear. You have given me 
reward enough on earth. 

Paumnb. Noble! [To herself.] Poseurs! 

GsNEvifivB. I should like to be your age and have 
done that! 

Mabqxtisb. I think you would do the same as I 
did under the circumstances. 

Gb jnbvi^vb . I would! So would Pauline ! 

Mabquise. Of course : she is Bretonne. 

Paumnb. [To herself.] They^U soon begin to 
think that we have. 

[A servant enters.] 

Sebvant. The carriage is ready. [He goes out.] 

Mabquis. [To the Marquise.] Come, my dear — 
[To Genevieve and Pauline.] We'll come back and 
get you for dinner. Now you may dress, ladies. 

GejjbviAvb . We have plenty of time. 

Paxtune. May I not be excused? 



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388 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Mabquis. Impossible, dear, the dinner is given in 
your honor. [The Marquis and Marquise go out at 
the back.] 

Paumnb. [To herself.] What a bore I [To 
Genevieve.] Where do they go every day at the 
same hour? 

Gbnevievb. They say they go out for a drive, but 
no one ever sees them. 

Pauunb. a mystery! 

Gbnbvibvb. I know, but I pretend not to; they 
visit the poor. 

Paumnb. But why the mystery? 

GBNBViivB. Shouldn^ charity always be secret? 

Paumnb. Yes, of course. [To herself.] Oh 
dear, what people t I don't know what to do next. 

GeneviSvb. Where is Henri T 

Paumnb. I have no idea — ^probably visiting the 
poor. 

Gbnbvibvb. He seems rather depressed lately. 

Paumnb. He's never been over-gay: he's a mel- 
ancholy boy. 

Gbnbvibvb. You don't know of any hidden 
trouble, do youf 

Paxtmnb. My dear, melancholy comes from the 
stomach. Healthy people are never melancholy; M. 
de Montrichard, for instance. [She sits down.] 

Gbnbvibvb. [Smiling.] He must have an ex- 
traordinary stomach ! 

Paumnb. How clever he is and how gay I 

Gbnbvibvb. He is amusing. 

PAUUK&. And brave I He would make a woman 
very happy. 

Gbnbve&vb. You say that as if Henri weren't 
making you happy T 

Paumnb. I am very happy, and Henri is charm- 
ing to me. Only, Mme. de Montrichard would have 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 389 

no occasion to envy me. I should like to see yon that 
woman. 

GBNBviivB. Met 

Pauukb. Haven ^t yon noticed what marked at- 
tention he pays yonf 

OsKEviivE. No. Did he tell yon f 

Pauunb. What? 

Obkevievk That he's paying attention to meT 

Paumnb. I have observed that myself; it's as 
dear as day. He is in love with yon. 

Obkbvievb. Are you interested in himt 

Paumnb. Yes — ^because I love you. 

O&NEviEVB. Then be good enough to ask him to 
stop. 

Pauunb. Why? Don't you like himf 

GEKBviivB. [Nervously.] No more than I do 
anyone else. I'm never going to marry. 

Pauunb. [Rising.] I'm surprised. I didn't 
think your reUgious devotion went so far as to elimi- 
nate marriage f 

Gbnbvibvb* It isn 't a matter of religion — it 's only 
an idea of mine. 

Paumnb. Then you love someone you cannot 
marry T 

GBNBviivB. I love no one 

Pauunb. You are blushing. [Drawing Oene- 
vieve to her.] Now, Genevieve, confide in me — ^am I 
not your friend? 

Genevi]^vb. I tell you, I don 't love anyone. 

Pauunb. Then you did love someone f 

GBNBviivB. Let's not talk about it, please. 
[Leaving Pauline.] 1 can't. [She goes to the 
sofa.] 

Pauunb. I understand I [To herself.] So much 
the better for MontrichardI [To Genevidve.] My 
dear, M. de Montrichard is not a man who cannot 



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390 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

forgive a youthful slip. [She goes to GenevQve 
again.] 

Gbnbvievb. a youthful slip f 

Paumnb. He^s the ideal husbaud for you. He'll 
uever inquire into your past life, and if anyone 
should ever make the slightest allusion to 

GBNBvifivB. To whatT 

Paumnb. What you don 't dare tell me — ^But don t 
blush, dear. [She makes Oenevi^ve sit down.] 
What young girl hasn't been imprudent once in her 
life? You meet a handsome young man at a dance ; 
he squeezes your hand ; then perhaps you answer a 
note of his — [Oenevi^ve starts to get up again, but 
Pauline retaitis her] and all in the most innocent 
possible way. Then you find you're compromised, 
without ever having done anything actually wrong. 

Gbnbvievb. NoteT Compromised f If 

Pauunb. Then what do you mean by saying you 
ought not to marry f 

GBNBYidvB. [Rising, with dignity.] I mean, 
Madame, that there is a man whom I have been 

brought up to regard as my future husband, and 

But you wouldn't understand! You could suspect 
1 [She turns her back to Pauline.] 

Paumnb. I am sorry if I hurt you, dear, but your 
reticence certainly led me to suppose — ^and you know 
I was only trying to be friendly I 

Gbnbvievb. [Giving Pauline her hand.] I was 
wrong! 

Pauunb. Now, be brave. There was a man, you 
say, whom you were brought up to regard as your 
future husband T 

Gbnbvievb. I gave all I could — ^respect and sub- 
mission to this fiance. I tried to think and act as he 
did. I was his companion in my secret thoughts — 
I — oh, I can 't tell you 1 Now I feel like a widow. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 391 

PauijInb. He ^s not dead f 

Obkbyi^vs. Dead to me — ^he is married. 

Paumnb. There *s no telling what men will do I 

Geijevjl^vb. He hardly knew me. He met a 
woman who was worthy of him, and married her — 
and he was right. 

PAUiiiNB. Then you should follow his example. 

Gbnevievb. With me it's diflferent. 

PATJLn^. Do you still love himf 

GbkbyxSyb. Even if I once loved him, I should 
have no right to do so now; his heart belongs to an- 
other woman. 

Pauunb. I don 't quite follow your subtle reason- 
ing 

Genbvibvb. It's simply a matter of keys. [They 
rise.] A husband should be able to open every 
drawer belonging to his wife, should he notT 

PAULmB. Of course. 

GBNBviivB. Here is a little gold key which I 
should have to keep from my husband. 

Paumkb. What does it opent 

GsNBviivB. An ebony box containing my diary. 

Patjunb. Tour diary f 

Gbkbvi^vb. Yes. My grandmother has taught me, 
ever since the time I was a little child, to write down 
what I do and think. 

Pauijkb. How queer! 

Gbnbvievb. It's a very good thing to look into 
one's heart every day. If there are any weeds, it's 
easy to pluck them out before they take root. 

PAXjiiiNB. Away with dog's-grass, eht And so 
you wrote down day by day this romance of yours T 
MetaphoricaUy speaking, that is the key to your 
heart T 

ObkbviSvb. Exactly. 



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392 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Paumkb. You may as well make up your mind 
that some day someone will steal it. 

GbnbviAvb. In any event, it will not be M. de 
Montrichard. 

Pauunb. So much the worse for him — and you I 

[A servant enters.] 

Sbbvant. M. de Beausejour. [He goes out.} 
Gbnbvibvb. And still less he I I can't bear him, 

the smooth, bragging 1 I'm going to dress. 

[She goes out] 

[Baudel conies in.] 

Baudbl. I hope I'm not driving anyone away t 

Pauunb. My cousin. 

Baudbl. I should regret it were I able to regret 
anything in your presence, Countess I 

Pauunb. [Going to get a smcUl hand-mirror 
which lies on a console-table to the right, and then 
motioning Baudel to a chair.] Very gallant of you, 
I'm sure I 

Baudbl. [To himself.] Alone, strange to say I 
Let us follow de Montrichard's advice, and may 
Buckingham preserve me I [He brings a chair dose 
to Pauline.] 

Pauunb. [Sitting on the sofa.] Is M. de Mont- 
richard sick, that we see Pylades alone T 

Baudbl. [Sitting down.] No, Madame, he is not 
He will himself come to present his respects. 

Pauunb. Do you know, your friendship is worthy 
the age of chivalry? 

Baudbl. Cemented in our blood! I owe Mont- 
richard a little revenge, and I shall soon pay my 
debt! 

Pauunb. What f Old friends like you f 

Baudbl. What can I dof He's absurd; he gets 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 393 

on my nerves t Think of it, he persists in noticing 
your resemblance to 1 

Paulins. [Looking at herself in the mirror.] 
That poor girl who died in Calif omia. Yes, I know. 
Don't yon agree with himf 

Baudel. I confess there is something — she re- 
sembled yon as the goose resembles the swan. 

Pauijkb. She wonld thank yon for that I 

BAm>EL. She lacked that grace, that distinction, 
that eminently aristocratic air 1 

Paxjuke. Yet Montrichard says we might be 
taken for sisters. 

Baudel. Yonr homely sister, perhaps I* [He 
laughs.] 

Pauunb. Clever! Bnt yon 're not at all gallant 
toward the woman yon once loved. Yon did once 
love Olympe, didn't yonf 

Baudel. Not in the least, bnt she was wild abont 
me I 

Paulxitb. Eeallyf 

Baudel. I had the devil of a time making her 
listen to reason ; she swore she was going to asphyxi- 
ate herself. 

Paulike. Is it possible f Perhaps it was becanse 
of yon that she went to California T 

Baudel. [Rising.] I am afraid so. Snchislife: 
we love those who do not love ns, and do not love 
those who love ns. Yon are now taking revenge for 
that poor creatnre, Mme. la Comtesse. 

Paulike. I thought I had forbidden that topic T 

Baudel. What then shall I talk abont T 

Pauunb. [Laying the mirror on the sofa.] Any- 
thing else. What did yon think of the affair laist 
night f 

* Ab imtraiuiUUble pan on "Soenr de laid" — ^homelj slater— «nd "Soeor 
dt Ulf '— f«>ster-slst«r. 



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394 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Baudbl. Charming. 

PauiiIkb. Take care, I *m laying a trap ; I ^m going 
to put your judgment to the test What did you 
think of my neighbor? 

Baudbl. Which t 

Patjunb. The slim lady to my right, with a head 
like an ostrich's — ^whose feet 8tu<^ out so from under 
her dress T 

BAUDBTi. That's not kind of you. Well, one 
would have to be the devil of a naturalist to class her 
as mammif erous. 

Paxjukb. Not bad. And the mistress of the 
house, with all her diamonds T 

Baudbl. I thought the diamonds superb. 

Paulikb. Like her teeth, half of them false! 
[She rises.] 

Baudbl. [To himself.] What a change in herl 
[To Pauline.] You are a connoisseur then. Coun- 
tess T 

Paulinb. Every woman is an amateur jewel con- 
noisseur. 

Baudbl. Will you then kindly give me your 
opinion on this trifle T 

[He takes a jewel-case from his pocket and opens 
it.] 

Paulinb. Very beautiful. That pearl on the 
clasp is magnificent. But what are you doing with 
such a river of jewels?* 

Baudbl. Making it flow — ^at the feet of — ^the feet 
of 

Paulinb. Some danseuse, I'll wager. 

Baudbl. At the feet of— the most deserving. 

Pauline. How lucky she is I 

[She holds up the necklace so that it sparkles.] 

* "Riviere" means necklace. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 395 

Baudbl. [To himself.] She does look like 
Olympel 

Patjuks. You Ye a bad subject 

Baudbl. Bad sovereigns make bad subjects. 

PATTiiiNE. You are too clever. This necklace 
looks a trifle tight. 

Baudel. Do you think soT 

Patjunb. Yes — see I [She takes it from the box, 
then gets the mirror. Baudel, who has taken the 
box, lays it on the table and returns to Pauline, who 
hands him the mirror. She then puts on the neck- 
lace.] No, it's plenty large enough. [To herself as 
she looks in the glass.] How it shows off the com- 
plexion! 

Baudbl. [To himself.] Montrichard was right; 
great ladies are as fond of jewels as the others are. 

What he knows about women 1 Now — I — a 

Countess's lover — ^that will certainly send me up in 
the world! 

Pauline. [Unclasping the necklace.] Take your 
diamonds to your danseuse now! 

Baudbl. After they have touched your neckf It 
would be the vilest profanation I 

PAULnra. Then what are you going to do with 
themT 

Baudbl. I shall keep them as a souvenir. 

Paulikb. No, no, I wouldn't allow that. 

Baudbl. Then, Countess, there is but one thing 
to do : keep them yourself as a souvenir of me, since 
you object to my having one of you. 

Paulikb. You're out of your senses! Are such 
things possible f 

Baudbl. Why askt It's very simple. Would 
you not accept a bouquet of flowers t Diamonds are 
flowers — ^which last a long time — ^that is alL 



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396 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Paumnb. Do you think my husband would look 
at it in that light T 

Baudel. [Laying the box on the table at the 
right.] You might tell him that they're paste. 

Paxjmnb. [To herself.] I never thought of that I 
What a fool I am; I forget that I have a hundred 
thousand francs income! [To BatMlel.] Let's not 
joke about it any longer. Monsieur. Take this bac^ 
to the jeweller — ^that will be best. [She gives him 
the necklace.] 

[Henri enters.] 

Baudel. [To himself.] Her husband, ehT [To 
Henri.] How are you, M. le Comtef You're just 
in time to clear up a mystery of which I am the 
victim. 

Henbi. What is the mystery. Monsieur f 

Baudel. Madame is trying to persuade me that 
these diamonds are only paste. [He hands Henri 
the necklace.] 

Paulinb. [To herself.] Who would have 
thought it of himt 

Henbi. I am no judge. [To the Countess.] Did 
you buy this, Madame T 

Pauline. Yes, because of the setting. — ^It 's an old 
one. — Quite a bargain. 

Baudel. I confess my ignorance, Madame, and I 
promise to keep the secret of the marvelous paste 
diamonds. It will be to my credit that others are 
deceived by them. Are you going to wear it tonight 
at Mme. de Bansberg'sT 

Henbi. Are you dining there. Monsieur f 

Baudel. No, M. le Comte, but Montrichard is go- 
ing to introduce me at the soiree afterward. I hope 
to make up at that time for not having seen you now, 
for I must go—[Botuing.] Mme. la Comtesse I M. le 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 397 

Comte! [To himself.] Things are going beauti- 
fully! [He goes out.] 

HsNBi. You have one great fault, Pauline: du- 
plicity — and you don't scruple to act on every occa- 
sion 

Patjukb, I don't see 1 

Hbkbi. Couldn't you tell me frankly if you 
wanted diamonds T 

Patjunb, [To herself.] Water seeks the river — 
certainly in this case.* 

Hbkbi. I never refused you anything reasonable^ 
As you are going into society, I realize you must 
have jewels, and if I have given you none so far, it 
was because I had not thought about it. But I re- 
peat, I dislike this underhand business. 

[He gives her the necklace.] 

Paxtunb. [Taking it.] I beg your pardon, dear. 
It was really such a small matter that I was ashamed 
to speak of it. 

IBbsKBi. How much do you need for other jewels? 

Pauunb. Didn't your mother have a jewel-box f 

Hbnbi. Yes. 

Paumi^. Wellt 

Hbkbi. Her diamonds became sacred objects 
when she died: they are not jewels, but remem- 
brances. [He goes to the left.] Suppose I allow 
you fifty thousand francs T Is that enough T 

PAUiiiKB. Thank you. [-4 pause.] 

Hbkbi. [Returning.] Has my aunt gone out yet T 

Paumkb. Yes, with your uncle. May I ask where 
you have just come fromT 

Hbkbi. A walk in the country. 

PAXjiiiKB. In those clothes? 

Hbkbi. No, I changed them when I came back. 

* 8m f ootaot«. p. 8M. 



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398 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Paxjmnb- [Going to Henri.] Why didn't you 
take met 

Hbnbi. Ton don't like walking— yon prefer driv- 
ing in the fashionable streets. 

Paxjmnb. But the country must be lovely I 

Hekbi. It is. 

Paxjijkb. In all the melancholy splendor of 
autumn I 

Henbi. What dress are you going to wear to- 
night? [He goes to the fireplace.] 

Paxjmnb. Henri, you are vexed with me about 
something f What is itT 

Hbkbi. What? 

Paulinb. I ask you — evidently there is some- 
thing. I have surely done nothing — ^have I given 
you reason to complaint 

Hbnbi. Have I given you any cause to be 
offended T 

Paumnb. The idea! 

Hbnbi. Please, Madame, let us leave these petty 
family quarrels to the lower classes ! You are too 
dignified to stoop to that. 

Paxjlikb. I see — ^those awful suspicions are 
troubling you again I 

Hbnbi. I have no suspicions. 

Paxjlinb. You mean you are sure. Tell me, 
Henri; my conscience is perfectly clear, and I de- 
mand an explanation. 

Hbkbi. No use, Madame, you will never have oc- 
casion to complain of my attitude. 

Pauunb. That's complete estrangement, then! 
Do you think for one moment I'll accept thatf 

IbNBi. What difference does it make to yout 

Paumnb. Now, Henri, for the love of Heaven! 
Our happiness is at stake, don't you seet Let us 
both be frank. I'll set you an example: yes, in 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 399 

bringmg you to Pilnitz, I knew we should meet your 
uncle. 

Hbkbl His secretary did tell me of a letter you 
had written him 

Pauunb. [To herself.] I thought sol 

Henbi. But I didn't believe that; you promised 
me you didn't know— you swore on your mother's 
souL 

Pauune, I would have sworn on the soul of my 
own child, if I had had one, because you are dearer 
to me than the whole world, and my first duty is to 
make you happy I I wanted to bring yiou back into 
your proper surroundings again, and allow you to 
breathe the air that is natural to you — ^that was my 
only crime. 

Henbi. I appreciate what you have done. 

Pauline. But the way you say it I Do you for 
one moment imagine that I was prompted by per- 
sonal pride — ^that I wanted to play a part in society, 
and masquerade as a great society belief An emp^ 
role, dear, and I am ovlj too ready to relinquish it 

Henbi. I can believe it I 

Pauline. This artificial existence bores me. 

Henbi. [Sitting down.] I know. 

Pauijne. Then what do you accuse me oft 

Henbi. Nothing. [He goes to the right of the 
table and sits down again.] 

PaUiine. [Sitting by him on a little table.] Come, 
Monsieur, you mustn't scowl I Kiss your wife, who 
loves you alone. [She offers her forehead; Henri 
touches it with his lips.] Do you object to my little 
trick for getting the necklace T Don't scold me — ^I 
don't deserve it. I'm not going to society affairs 
any more. Then, that matter of your mother's jew- 
els — ^that was tactless, indelicate of me. I should 
have realized that a saint's relics should belong only 



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400 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

to an angeL Keep them, preserve them religiously, 
and if Heaven grants us the blessing of a daughter 

Henri. [Violently, as he rises.] You — a daugh- 
ter ! She might resemble you t 

Paxjmnb. Henri! [She tries to stand up, but he 
forces her hack to her place.] 

HsNBi. Don^t say a wordl Let us have no more 
of this ridiculous farce I I know you only too well I 
All that virtue you assume so cleverly, your unself- 
ishness, love, repentance — ^the whole thing, has fallen 
from you like a load, like thick paint — ^in the warm 
atmosphere of this family circle! I can see! lam 
no longer the child you seduced ! 

Paumnb. [Standing up.] You grow younger, 
my dear; you had reached years of discretion when 
you married me. 

Henbi. [Sadly.] Twenty-two! I had just lost 
my father, a man whose severity kept me a child 
when I should have been a young man. You were 
my first mistress — ^I knew nothing of life, except 
what you taught me. I wasnH hard to deceive; I 
made an easy rung in the ladder of your ambition. 

Pauline. My ambition? Ha, how far has it 
gone? I'm really surprised at you! You might 
think I had lived a gay and merry life with you, alone 
for a year! 

Henbi. You may well regret all the wasted hours, 
after what I have just found out. The society our 
family moves in is not exactly what you had ex- 
pected, I know, and your disappointment has opened 
my eyes. You feel that this is not quite your place — 
you feel ill at ease, out of your natural element ; you 
cannot forgive the real society ladies for the superi- 
ority of their manners and their breeding . 

[Pauline is about to speak.] I can see how bitter 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 401 

yon are from every word you speak. Yon cannot 
understand the true worth or the essential goodness 
of the family. Ton are bore<^ and as out of place as 
an unrepentant sinner in church 

Patjunb. [Sharply.] That will dol You don't 
love me, in other words. There is only one thing to 
do — separate— on friendly terms. 

Hbnbi. Separate f Never. 

Pauunb. Are you doing me the honor to want my 
company f 

Hbnei. You bear my name, Madame, and I shall 
not allow it to be dragged in the gutter. [A pause 
ensues.'] Now let us quietly accept the result of our 
act We are bound together; let us walk side by 
side, and try not to hate each other. 

Pauunb. You will find that difScult. 

Hbkbi. Never fear; if I cannot forget how you 
became Countess de Puygiron, I shall never lose sight 
of the fact that you are she. Now I have already 
shown you too much of what I feel — ^this explanation 
is at an end. Let us do our best to keep up appear- 
ances. 

Pauunb. a nice life to look forward to, isn't it? 
[Genevieve enters in evening dress.] 

GBNBviivB. Pauline, aren't you going to dress f 
They're coming for us soon. 

Pauiinb. I forgot — ^I was talking with Henri. 
I'll hurry, though. [She starts to go.] Scold your 
cousin, dear; she wants to be an old maidt 

Gbnbvievb. Pauline I 

Paxjunb. Henri is another edition of myself. 
She wants to remain an old maid in order to be faith- 
ful to a childhood husband who deserted her — ^for 
three dolls I 

Hbnbi. [Troubled.] Genevieve ? 

GbkbviIvb. I don't know what she means f 



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402 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Pauukb. [To herself.] How troubled they are I 

Henbi. [To Pauline.] You'll never be ready in 
time I 

Paumnb. [To herself.] Ha, is he the childhood 
husband f I'll soon find out I [A gesture from 
Henri.] I 'm going. You '11 talk sense to her, won 't 
you? [She goes out.] 

Gekevieve. Pauline doesn 't know what she 's talk- 
ing about. She can't imagine a girl's not wanting 
to marry without there being some mystery. 

Heiou. Is it true you don't intend to marry? 

Gbnevi^vb. I don't exactly know, but I'm not 
prejudiced against marriage. I consider it the basis 
of home-life, if not a religion in itself, and I should 
be too proud to accept a master who would not be a 
god for me. 

Hbnbi. You are right, Genevieve ; wait for a man 
who is worthy of you. 

Gbnevievb. My grand-parents have given me so 
splendid an example of married life that I'd rather a 
thousand times go into a convent than marry for the 
sake of convenience, or because it's the thing to do. 
Bather than accept the first man who happens 
along- — - 

Hbnbi. The worst misfortune that can befall a 
human being is an uncongenial marriage. 

Gbnbvi^vb. And I'm so happy here — ^my people 
are so good to me I The man who takes me from my 
home will seem like a stranger — ^it would be like leav- 
ing a temple for an inn. 

Hbnbi. [To himself.] Here was my happiness I 
So near at hand I [He turns aside, putting his hand 
over his eyes.] 

Gbkbvievb. What are you thinking of? 

Hbnbi. Nothing; I was looking at that portrait 



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THE MARRIAGE OP OLYMPE 403 

[He indicates the Marquise's portrait, over the 
fireplace.] 

Gei^tsvieve. It seems to keep watch! How com- 
forting it is ! I feel that the whole house is protected 
by it 

Hbkbi. [To himself, as he looks at the portrait.] 
She would have been my mother I [A servant en- 
ters, announces Madame Mori/n and goes out.] 
Madame Morinf 

{Irma comes vn.] 

Ibma. Where is shef Where is my daughter? — 
How are you, son-in-law f 

Gbitevieve. How glad Pauline will be t 

lB]iA« Where is she? 

Genevieve. Dressing. Don't let her know you 
are here — ^we'll give her a surprise. 

Ibma« You must be her cousin, Mademoiselle f 
Fine young lady, well set-up I Bliss me, will you, 
angel t 

Genevieve. Delighted, Madame. [She goes 
toward Irma, hut Henri quickly steps between the 
two.] 

Henbi. To what do I owe the pleasure of seeing 
you, Madame? 

Ibma. My maternal affection. [A carriage is 
heard outside.] 

GENEYiivB. Grandfather's coming. I'll tell him 
you're here. [She goes out.] 

Hbnbl What do you want? 

Ibma« Well — ^have I a daughter or haven 't I ? 

Henbl You haven't any longer. She is dead to 
you : you have inherited everything she possessed. 

Ib^ My dear, that inheritance has taken wings 1 
I've speculated. 

Henbi. I see. How much will you take to go ? 



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404 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Ibha. Heavens I He wants to buy a mother's 
love! 

Henbi. 1*11 give you an income of fifteen hundred 
francs. 

Ibma. I must have my daughter. 

Hbkbi. Three thousand. 

Ibma. You poor boy I 

Hbkbi. Gome, Madame, they*ll be here shortly; 
tell me how much you '11 take. 

Ibma. Five thousand. 

Hbnbi. Very well But you leave tomorrow 
morning I 

Ibma. All right. 

Hbkbi. Sh! Here's my uncle. 

[The Marquis comes in.] 

Mabquis. I am very glad to see you, Mme. Morin. 

Ibma. M. le Marquis, the honor is mine. 

Mabquis. As the motiier of a charming daughter I 
True I 

Ibma. Excuse my traveling clothes — ^l should 
have fixed up a little, but I so wanted to see my girl I 

Mabquis. Very natural, but your Breton costume 
would have been dear to the eyes of an old Chouan. 
It was very wrong of you not to wear it. 

Hekbi. [To Irma.] Pretend to understand! 

Ibma. Oh, one can't travel in such a costume. 

Mabquis. [To Henri.] She looks like a clothes- 
dealer — ^but your wife will see to that. [Aloud.] 
Will you see that Madame 's room is made ready? 

Ibma. A thousand thanks, M. le Marquis, but I'm 
only passing through the city. I must leave for 
Dantzig tomorrow morning. 

Mabquis. And why must you go to Dantzig so 
soonf 

Ibma. To collect a debt of a hundred thousand 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 405 

francs. I 'II lose it if I don 't go tomorrow. Ask my 
son-in-law. 

Hekbi. That's so. 

Mabquis. Then I have nothing further to say. 
Bnt yon will see ns on your return? 

IfiMA. You are too good, M. le Marquis. 

Mabquis. I should like to know you better. We 'II 
talk about Brittany — ^in Breton. 

Ibma. [To herself.] Good Lord I 

Hbkbi. I think it's time to go to Mme. de Bans- 
berg'Sy Unde. Pauline may stay with her mother; 
it will be an excellent excuse. 

Mabquis. Very true. 

[The Marquise and Genevieve enter.} 

Mabquise. You are very welcome^ Madame. 

Mabquis. My wife — Madame Morin. 

Ibha. [Confused.] Madame — ^I — this honor 

Mabquisb. You find your daughter surrounded 
here oidy by friends, Madame. 

Ibma. Oh, of course — ^Madame — ^Madame is too 
goodl 

[Pauline enters in evening dress, wearing the 
necklace.] 

Pauldtb. Are you ready? 

Mabqxtis. You shan't have to go, dear. 

Paumnb. Why? [Genevieve takes her hand and 
conducts her to Irma.] Mother! [She steps back, 
looking nervously at the Marquis.] 

Ibma. Yes, dearie, it's me! 

Mabquis. [To the Marquise.] We're in the way 
here. — ^We are now obliged to leave you, Madame ; we 
are dining out. 

Mabquise. We should be very sorry, Madame, to 



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406 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

be in the way — ^you must want to give free rein to 
your feelings. 

Ibma. Oh, I — ^please 

GBNBViifevB. [To PauUne.] What lovely dia- 
monds I 

Mabquis. Welly welly Henri is gallant t 

Pauunb. They're only paste — ^I just thought it 
would be amusing to have themt 

Mabquise. Marvelous imitation — ^that pearl espe- 
cially! But, my dear, the Countess de Puygiron 
shoi^d never wear artificial pearls t — €k>od evening, 
Madame. 

[She takes Henri's arm, Genevieve takes that of 
the Marquis, and they go out. It begins to grow 
dark. Pauline waits a moment until the others are 
out of hearing.] 

Paulinb. Oh, Mother, how glad I am to see you ! 
[She kisses her.] What is going on in Paris f How 
is Celeste? And Clemencef And Taffetas? Ernest? 
Jules? Gontran? And how was the ballet at the 
Opera? And the Maison d'Or? And the Mont-de- 
Piete? 

Ibma. Ohmyl 

Paulinb. IVe been dying to know for a whole 
year ! Let me take off my corsets t God, it's fine to 
talk with you mother for a minute ! 

Ibma. Pauline's herself again! I knew all this 
greatness wouldn't change you. You're always the 
same. 

Pauunb. More than ever. Did the news of my 
death make much of a stir in Paris? 

Ibma. I should say it didl What a lot of people 
went to your funeral! More than to La Fayette's I 
I was awfully proud to be your mother — ^teke my 
word for it I 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 407 

Pauijke. Poor dear! But here I am rattling 
along— maybe you'd like something to eat? 

Ibma. Give me some fruit— fresh. It's six 
o'clock. 

Pauijnb. I forgot — ^happiness of seeing you! 
[She rings.] 

Ibma. I'm all excited I 

[A servant enters. Irma takes off her hat and 

doak.] 

pAinjKB. Lay places for two. [To Irm<i.] Shall 
we eat here? 

Ibma. Suits me down to the ground. 

Pauijkb. [To the servant, severely.] You hear? 
And don't take an hour for it, either I 

Sbbvant. [To himself.] As if I were a dog! 
[He goes out.] 

Pauunb. [Returning to Irma.] What did the 
girls think of my trick? 

Ibma. They were all jealous of the gorgeous 
funeraL Clemence threw herself into my arms and 
cried: **The idea! Oh, my!" 

Pauunb. Poor creature! Who's she with now? 

Ibma. Don't talk about it ! She's got better luck 
than an honest woman! A fine general — ^fifteen 
thousand a year ! 

Paxjijnb. I was a bigger fool than she! [The 
servant brings a table and sets it.] 

Ibma. Aren 't you happy ? 

Paxtukb. We'll talk about that later. How did 
Henri receive you? 

Irma. Beautifully! Offered me five thousand a 
year and showed me the door! 

Paxjijnb. So that 's why you came ? 

Ibma. ^^ Subsidiary considerations," as the Ga- 



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408 THE MARRIAGE OP OLTMPE 

eette des Tribunatix says. What could I do? iVe 
lost heavily t Speculations I 

[A servant enters.} 

Sbbvaijt. M. de Montrichard. [The servant goes 
out. Montrichard enters.] 

MoKTBicHABD. They told me downstairs, Coun- 
tess, that your mother had come, so I How goes 

it, Irma? 

Ibma. [To Pauline.] Does he know f 

Pauunb. Yes, he's a friend. 

[Two servants enter, each with a lighted can- 
delahrum.] 

Have yon dined, M. de Montrichard? 

MoNTBiOHABD. No, Madame. 

Pauunb. Yon shall dine with ns. [To a serv- 
ant.] Lay another place. 

Ibma. [T Pauline.] Is this regiment of serv- 
ants going to keep ns company? 

Pauunb. [To the servants.] Bring the table 
here. Now yon may go. [ The servants leave.] 

MoNTBiOHABD. Who will Wait on ns? 

Ibma. I will. 

MoNTBiGHABD. By God ! Served by Hebe! 

Ibma. Hebe yourself t Here h^ is with his cursed 
Latin again ! 

MoNTBiOHABD. Dou't be offended, my Irma I Hebe 
was a very clever yoxmg person. 

Pauunb. Sit down. [They seat themselves 
around the table.] 

Ibma. Who*s dying of hunger? Mel 

MoNTBiOHABD. What a charming disposition you 
have! 

Ibma. Well, I have only two decent meals a day! 

MoNTBicHABD. You'rc always delightful^ Irma. 



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TEE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 409 

Ibma. Oo on! 

MoKTEiOHABD. Factf YouVe improved daring 
these past three years. Yon Ve grown a little beard 
that adds materially to yonr — ^virility. 

Ibma. Yon old 1 

Pauunb. Now be nice. 

Ibma. It isn't a beard at all — ^it's a beanty-spot 1 

Paulinb. Oh, let me langht I haven't had a 
chance for ever so longt 

Ibma. Yon're bored to death, dear child. 

Paxtune. Ask Montrichard — and then take off 
the dishes. [Irma rises and takes the dishes.] 

Ibma. Is she bored, Montrichard f 

Moktbiohabd. [Serving the chicken.] Is she? 

Ibma. Lord, how can that be f A Conntess ! 

Pauunb. I can't nnderstand how these society 
ladies get nsed to the life they lead I 

MoHTBiCHABD. They're canght early and trained. 

Ibma. [To Pauline.] I'll have some cress. Isn't 
your husband good to youf 

Paulinb. He's all right, poor boy, but he doesn't 
love me any longer. 

MoNTBicHABD. Thcu he must hate you. Have 
you had an explanation? 

Pauunb. Had one just today. 

MoNTBiGHABD. [To himsclf.] Goodl 

Paxjukb. I made an idiotic marriage I 

Ibma. Poor dear ! You take away my appetite I 

MoNTBicHABD. Very advantageous separations 
often come of poor marriages. 

Ibma. Montrichard is right — ^I 've found my appe- 
tite again. Yes, you must separate. [She pours the 
wine.] You keep your title of Countess, take 
twenty-five thousand francs' income, and enjoy your- 
self 1 

Pauijnb. Henri wouldn 't listen to it I 



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410 TEE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Ibma. But if he doesn H love you 1 

Patjune. He's afraid I'll ^^drag his name in the 
gutterl'' 

MoNTRiOHARD. Impertinent fool I 

Ibma. Put him in the wrong: brutal treatment, 
article 231! Plant your witnesses and make him 
strike you t 

Paumnb. He's too much of a coward to strike a 
woman! 

MoNTBiOHABD. Abductiou! Baudel's always 
ready. 

Ibma. Or separation on grounds of infidelity — 
three months or two years in jail — article 308. 

Paitunb. That's all he wants! 

MONTBIOHABD. If 

Patjlinb. Don't you think I see the trick f You're 
trying to get me into some deal to disgrace this illus- 
trious family and then help you in your own matri- 
monial schemes. You don't care what becomes of 
me. 

MoNTBiOHABD. Wouldu't it be awful, those three 
months in jail — ^like three months in a sanitarium! 

Think of your former life . And then your trial 

would be a great advertisement! 

Paumnb. And the — ^matrimonial donations? 

Ibma. Annulled by the infidelity, old man. 

MoNTBioHABD. [To Mmself.} She knows the code 
like a thief I 

Pauunb. Henri gave me five hundred thousand 
francs — ^in my marriage contract — ^and I don't intend 
to lose it 

MoNTBioHABD. Well, you can't have your cake 
and eat it tool 

Pauukb. I hope I can arrange an amicable sepa- 
ration. I must be able to have a lever on the f am 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 411 

ily, and dictate my own terms. I'll find a way. In 
fact, Vve already thonght of a plan. 

Ibha. What is it? 

Paxjunb. I am not absolutely sure of the f acts, 
but I can soon find out. Let 's have some champagne 
meantime, and enjoy ourselves when we have the 
chance. 

IfiMA. Gk>od, that suits me I 

MoNTBiCHABD. Me too. Here 's to you, Irma I 

[A servant enters carrying a card on a tray.] 

SsBVAKT. A gentleman to see Mme. la Comtesse. 

Paumnb. [Reading the card.] **Adolphe, Com- 
edian, Theater of Vienna.'* I don't know him. 

Ibma. Comedian? You — ^you haven't laughed 
for so long 

Pauijnb. Have you seen him act, Montrichard 1 

MoNTBioHABD. Tos, hc imitates Parisian actors. 

Ibma« Have him up, it'll amuse you, Minette. 

Fattlote. [To the servant.] Ask him to come in, 
and then serve dessert. [The servant goes out. 
Adolphe enters wearing a hlach suit and a white 
cravat.] 

AnoiiPHB. I beg your pardon, Mme. la Comtesse, 
for the liberty I am taking of 

Pauukb. Be seated. Monsieur. 

[The servant brings in the dessert.] 

Adolphe. The day after tomorrow our theater is 
to give a performance for my benefit, and I thought 
you would be glad, as a compatriot, to take a box. 
Will you be so good as to accept this? 

[He gives a ticket to Montrichard, who hands it to 
Pauline.] 

Paumotb. Many thanks. Monsieur. I am told 
that you do impersonations! 



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412 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Adolphb. TeSy Madame^ I owe my success in a 
foreign country to that. 

Pauunb. If yon are not occupied this evening, we 
should be delighted to hear you. 

Adolphb. Charmed, Madame. 

Pauukb. [To the servant] Bring me another 
glass, and then go. [The glass is brought and filled 
with wine.] Here, M. Adolphe, drink this. 

Adolphb. Thank you, Madame, but champagne 
does not agree with me. 

JxMJu It's Cliquot, old man; you can't get drunk 
on that I Here 's to you I 

Adolphb. [After drinking.] It 's good I 

Ibha. [Pouring out another glassful for him.] 
Say, little one, you squint, don't youf 

Adolphb. Yes, Madame, that squint was what in* 
duced me to go into comic impersonation. 

Montbiohabd. And is to give us the pleasure of 
hearing you ! [Adolphe drinks.] 

Paulikb. Sing us a song, M. Adolphe. 

Adolphb. Le Petit cochon de Barbarief [Irma 
again fills his glass.] 

PAULnra. No, a student song ! 

Adolphb. I don't know any. 

Montbiohabd. But you look as if you'd been a 
notary's clerk? 

Adolphb. I have. Monsieur. 

Paulikb. You have f 

Adolphb. Yes, I come of a good family, Madame ; 
my father was one of the biggest hardware mer- 
chants in Paris. He wanted me to go into the law, 
but an irresistible sense of vocation drove me to the 
boards. [He drinks.] 

Montbiohabd. Your father must have been very 
angry? 

Adolphb. He even refused to allow me to use his 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 413 

name — said I was soiling it by dragging it before the 
footlights. 

Patjune* What is his name? 

AooLPHE. Mathieu. 

MoNTBioHASD. It wonld have been downright sac- 
rilege! 

IsMA. Here's to yon, then, son of Mathient I 
like yon! Yon 're not handsome and yon 're some- 
thing of a fool, bnt yon 're nice and simple! 

AnoiiPHE. [Displeased.] Madame I 

Ibma. Now yon mnstn't be angry, little one! I 
was only joking ! [She rises, holding a bottle in one 
hand and a glass in the other.] Ton 're good look- 
ing, good looking— between sqnints ! 

Paxtukb. Gome now, let's pnt onr elbows on the 
table and say foolish things! Why, I can almost 
imagine myself at the Provengaux — ^I'm bom again! 

MoNTBicHABD. [To himself.] Homesickness for 
themnd! 

Ibica. Can't see decently in here! And I don't 
like to say foolish things in the dark! [She hands 
the bottle to Adolphe.] 

MoNTBiOHABD. Someonell get woxmded! 

Paumnb. [Taking a candle from the table and 
putting it in one of the candelabra.] Let's light all 
the candles ! Help me, Montrichard. 

MoKTBiOHABD. I don't faiow how many there are 
— bnt before long Irma's going to see thirty-six. 

AooiiPHE. Well, I see Mteen. [Pauline and 
Montrichard stand on chairs at each side of the fire- 
place and light the large candelabra between which 
hangs the portrait.] 

Ibma. A pictnref What is itf 

Paxjunb. a barometer. 

Ibha. That barometer looks to me like an old 
lady. 



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414 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

MoiffTBiOHABD. [To Poulinc.] Hm! What if she 
should come in now? 

Pauunb. Let them all come I They can send 
me to the devil with their five hundred thousand 
francs, if they like! 

Adolphe. [Who has taken Montrichard^s place.] 
I'd like to suggest a toast. 

Ibma. [Coming down-stage on the right.] Go 
ahead, but try to be respectable. 

MoNTBiGHABD. Wait for us. [Near the td^le.] 
We're listening. 

Adolphb. To that enchanting sex which is the 
charm and torment of our existence — ^in a word : the 
ladies t 

MoNTEioHABD. Tou are rather forward, M. 
Adolphel 

Ibma. / call it risque! 

Pauline. Gomes from a fortunate man, evi- 
dently. 

Adolphb. Yes, Madame 

MoNTBioHABD. You must havc all sorts of affairs, 
a man like you, so exposed in the theater 

Adolphb. [Fatuously.] I must admit that op- 
portunities are not lacbdng. 

Montbiohabd. Then what is, for the love of 
Heaven? 

Adolphb. I 'm a respectable man : I 'm married. 

Paulinb. a very grave fault— you must try to re- 
deem yourself. 

Ibma. And look after your wife I Take my ad- 
vice! 

Adolphb. I beg you, respect the mother of my 
children I 

Montbiohabd. Oh, Adolphe, hast thou children! 

Adolphb. Three, all my living image 1 

Paitlinb. I pity the youngest. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 416 

Adolphb. Why? 

Pattunb. He has the longest time daring which 
to resemble yon I 

MoNTBiOHASD. All children begin by looking like 
papa, and end by resembling their father t 

Ibma. * * The voice of blood * ' is a prejudice. 

Paxtunb. [Raising her glass.} Down with preju- 
dices! Down with the family! Down with mar- 
riage ! Down with the marquis ! 

MoKTBiOHABD. Dowu with hardware merchants ! 

Adolphb. Down with hardware merchants I 

Ibma. Long live us I 

Paxtunb. [Singing.] : 

^'When you haven't any money 

And you write to your dad, 
And he answers, ^^ Don't get funny; 

Don 't make love on my cash, lad ; 
Tou can't make love on that. 
And turn night into day " 

[AU join in the refrain, cUnking their knives on the 
glasses. Adolphe faUs from his chair, and Irma 
gradually dozes.] 

MoifTTBiOHABD. [To Mmself.] And to think of all 
she did in order to become a countess I 

Patjlinb. [Dreamily.] The dear old songs of my 
youth I Those lovely old dresses and scarves I used 
to wear I The dances at the C^oumt^ra— dinners at 
the Moidin-Rouge — ^the old mill I used to throw my 
hat over! I can see a young girl living in an attic; 
one day she runs off over the fields to meet her lover 
for the first time. And the sun! ''Open the door, 
please!" 

Ibma. [Half-asleep.] Ah! 

Mohtbiohabd. [To himself.] I thought so ! 



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416 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

Adolphe. [Rising, quite drunk.] I tell yon — 
I'm not bad-lookmgl 

Paumnb, Then you're a blackguardly imposter! 
Take off your false nose and your china eyes 1 

MoKTBiCHABD. Take off his head, while we're 
about it! 

Adolphb. My wife thinks I'm very distinguished 
looking. 

Paxjukb, She's unfaithful to you! 

Adolphb. Oh, if I thought s o 1 

MoNTBiOHABD. You may be sure she isn't, old 
man! You should never doubt your wife! 

Adolphb. Would you swear it on the head of this 
respectable lady t 

MoKTBiOHABD. Loud me your head, Irma; I 
should like to oblige this gentleman. 

Adolphb. [Sobbing.] How unhappy I am! 
She's deceiving me, I know ! 

Paulinb. How about your good looks, now, you 
foolf 

Ibm A. There 's a fine comedian for you ! 

Adolphb. [Falling into Irma's arms.] You, my 
mother, you understand me! 

Ibma. [Repulsing him.] Here now, you fool! 
Tell us something funny; you came here to make us 
laugh. 

Adolphb. That's right — ^well — a baptism song! 
[He sings.] : 

Little Leon, on his mother's breast 
Was never unhappy 

[He stops, sobbing again.] My poor duldren! 
They are unhappy! 
Paulinb. Whatt Your children? 
Adolphb. I bought my wife a cake yesterday, and 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 417 

I haven't paid the baker yet! [He falls down into 
his chair.] 

MoNTSiCHABD. [To himsslf*} Poor devil ! 

Ibma. Look, Mhiette, he's a good-hearted fellow. 
He '8 mining hiinself for women. 

Pattuistb. Don't cry, baby— we won't send you 
away empty-handed! Montridiard, give him my 
purse. 

MoNTBiCHABD. [To Pouline.] Charity will be 
your ruin. [Giving Adolphe the purse.] Here you 
are, old man. 

AnoiaPHB. [Rejecting it.] No. Monsieur, no— I 
receive money onfy from my manager — ^when he 
gives it to me. This would be charity. Thank you, 
I come of a good family! 

Pauunb. I feel so sorry for him. I don't like to 
see misery at such close quarters. 

Ibica. If he's proud, it's his own loss I 

Pauunb. What can I make him accept f [She 
quickly takes the pearl from her necklace and gives 
it to Adolphe.] Here, baby, here's a little trinket 
for your wife. You can 't refuse that. 

MoKTBicHABD. [To Mmself.] How absurd! 

Adolphb. Tou are very kind, Mme. la Comtesse. 
[He kisses her hand.] 

PAUMira. It's late — ^you must go home now. Take 
him to the door, Montrichard. [Irma fills Adolphe *s 
pockets with the remains of the dessert.] 

Moktbichabd. Take my arm, M. Adolphe. [To 
himself.] Olympe is herself again! God knows 
where she'll end now ! 

Adolphb. [To Pauline.] You're an angeL [To 
Irma.] You're both angels. 

Montbichabd. Don't say that! They won't be- 
lieve you! 

Adolphb. [To Montrichard.] So are you t 



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418 THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 

MoKTBiCHABD. Of couTse I am. So are you — an 
impossible angel. Come now, son of Mathien! 
[They go out] 

Ibma. [Tatuning and stretching herself.] What 
an idea! To give him an artifioiai pearl! 

Paxjune. Artificial? It's worth at least a thou- 
sand francs. 

Ibma. [Sitting up.] A thousand francs f Are 
you crazy f 

Pauline. What of itf I didn't have anything 
else handy. [Brooding for an instant.] It will 
bring me luck ! My separation will be a success ! 

Ibka. Got a pack of cards around here? 

PAULnnB. [Taking a candelabrum and going 
toward the door leading to her room.] Not here, but 
I have in my room. Why f 

Ibma. [FoUoiving her.] I want to try — see how 
you'll succeed. 

Pauline. Do you still believe in card-tricks f 

Ibbca. Do If That's the only thing that's dead 
certain! 

Pauline. Nonsense! 

Ibma. Stop it! You'll come to some bad end if 
you don't believe in something. 

Pauline. I rely on myself. [Taking up the can- 
delabrum which she had set down.] 

Ibma. You 're right ; we must help ourselves ; then 
Heaven will help us. 

Pauline. Yes, Heaven! 

Ibma. Figuratively speaking. Now for the 
cards! 

Paxtune. My separation! 

[They go out at the left. As Irma passes the Mar- 
quise^s portrait, she bows to it. J 



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ACTm 

The scene is the same as that of the preceding act. 
Montrichard and a servant are present 

SsBYANT. Mme. la Comtesse asks M. le Baron to 
be good enongh to wait a moment for her. Here are 
the newspapers. [He goes out.] 

MoNTBicHABD. Do I arrive in the midst of a 
crisis? Hardly tactfol, bnt what's the oddsf If I 
dent succeed in marrying this lady, I can easily find 
another. Now I am really quite a catch. But then 
why should I marry at all f 

[Paidine comes in.] 
Paxtukb. How are you, M. de Corbeaut* 
MoKTBicHABD. Do I scem handsome** to youf 
Pauuke. As everything does which one is on the 
point of losingf 

MoKTBioHABD. Oh, havc I been fortunate enough 
to cause you some anxiety, Mme. la Comtesse f 

Pauuke. Even sleeplessness— or rather, night- 
mares. How inconsiderate of you to stay at Hom- 
burg for a week without writing a line 1 I dreamed 
of you as having lost every sou, and your head was 
bound up in bloody bandages ! 

MoKTBiCHABD. And you shed a tear for mef 
Mourned by Olympe — ^what an occasion for a beauti- 
ful death! I've always missed the exact occasion. 
Far from blowing out my brains, I blew up the 
bank!*" 

•IMmXty, ''erow/' used in the mum of ''Tnltiiie.'' 

**A pun <m ''beau'' — hmadMme—ftiid ^'eorbeau.'' 

***A pan on "nnter U eenreUe'' and ^'nater la banqoe.'' 

419 



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420 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Paxjunb. Really t 

MoNTBiCHABD. As really as I have the honor to 
announce the news to yon. 

Pauuke. [EnthttsiasticaUy.] What a mant 
And what Inckl And yon wonder why women love 
and admire yon! If yon were only willing, it 
wouldn't be that fool Bandel who'd abdnet me ! 

MoKTBiOHABD. It would bo that ass Montrichard 
— ^bnt yon would be a greater fool than he ! 

Pauuke. [Laughing.] That's true enough. 

MoNTBiOHABD. What is this joke about the abduc- 
tion t 

Pattmnb. It's a very serious matter. I have 
made up my mind to kick over the traces, and I've 
chosen M. de Beaus^jour as my accomplice. 

Moktbiohabd. But I was told at his rooms this 
morning that he went away last nij^tf 

Paxtunb. Yes — ^to Nice. 

MoKTBiOHABD. But why without you t 

Pauukb. I remain to negotiate with the honor- 
able family for an amicable separation. 

MoNTBiOHABD. Which you hope to obtain? 

Paxtunb. Which I am sure to obtain. There is 
an element of chance, because I intend to impose my 
own conditions; but since yesterday I have found 
very persuasive arguments, and I assure you every- 
thing will be arranged. They thought when I en- 
tered their family that I dishonored it! Watch my 
exit! 

MoNTBiOHABD. But why didn't Bandel wait for 
youf 

Paxjunb. First, I wanted to get some predous 
possessions of mine safe out of the way. He took 
them with him. 

Montbichabd. Your diamonds f 

Paxjmkb. Other things, too. Then he mxist find 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 421 

a place for me to stay. Do yon think I want to stop 
at a hotelf I'm tired of my life during these past 
eighteen months. I'm going to make np for lost 
time, make no mistake about that ! 

MoKTBicHABD. Poor Baudell Be a good girl, 
now. Countess, and don't ruin the boy ! 

PAuiiiKB. He will get just what he deserves, he, 
the prince of fools ! 

MoKTEiOHABD. But he's a dear child. 

Paxjuks. Think sof Do you know, he had the 
audacity to claim that he'd once been Olympe Ta- 
vemy's lover f 

lioNTBiCHABD. While as a matter of fact he only 
belonged to the number of those who had notf 

Pauohb. Now, now 

MoKTEiOHABD. I bcg your pardon, Countess — ^if I 
dare still call you by tiiat name? 

Paumnb. You may dare, old man; I'm not going 
to drop it. 

MoNTBiOHABD. May be the Puygirons will drop it 
for youT 

Paulinb. I'd rather give up my money. Their 
name's a gold mine, dear. 

MoNTBicHABD. But what if they offered some 
compensation? 

Patjunb. Theyf Poor people! I don't advise 
them to. I tell you I have them ! 

MoKTBiOHABD. So tight as that? 

Patjunb. Yes. I've not lost much time since 
you've been away; I've been working this last week. 

MoNTEiCHABD. Oh, dou't tell me 

Patjunb. You're afraid of being dragged in as 
an accomplice f 

MoNTBiOHABD. I waut to be nothing in all this 
business but a sort of good genius — ^and then 



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422 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Pauokb. Then? What do you meanf 

MoKTBioHABD. That this marriage of mine 

Welly I'm not so anxious about it now. 

Pauijnb. What I 

MoKTBicHABD. I'm uot ready to make a fool of 
myself that way until I have nothing left with which 
to commit more follies. Now I have cash. In the 
second place, I don't think the young lady is espe- 
cially attracted to me. If, therefore, she were forced 
to ts^e me for want of a better, she would have her 
revenge on met I should be paying dear! I'd 
rather she went into a convent than I! 

Pauunb. I shan't insist, if you look at it in that 
light. And I must say the child doesn't love you-^ 
she loves someone else. 

MONTBICHABD. I SUSpCCtcd it. 

Pauuke. Do you know who that someone else isf 
I give you a hundred guesses. — ^My husband! 

MoNTBicHABD. Who sald sof Shef 

Pattline. She has no idea I know. 

MoNTBicHABD. How did this hopeless love take 
roott 

PAUMira. It 's not hopeless — ^that 's the nicest part 
of the business. She's taken it into her head that 
I'm a consumptive, that I haven't more than six 
months to live. I don't know where she got that 
idea! 

MoNTBiOHABD. [To himself.] I wonder! 

Paumnb. And she's waiting for my death with 
angelic serenity. That's the way with these angels ! 
Dealers in morality! Good Lord, we're better than 
they! Don't you think sot 

MoNTBiOHABD. Well, betwecu the person who sets 
a trap and the one who allows himself to be caught 
there's hardly a hair's difference. So, I get off 
8Cott-f ree, thanks to you 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLYMPE 423 

Pauunb. And now that you know how matters 
stand, be good enough to go away. My dressmaker 
is waiting for me; I must have a serious talk with 
her. Yon don't have to think hard to know I'm not 
going to show off on the Promenade des Anglais 
those monastic weeds that captured simple Henri's 
heart! 

MoHTRiCHAED. Shall I see you again, thenf 

Pauukb. In this family, no, but I have a notion 
you'U walk into Nice some day and want to be set on 
your feet again. 

MoNTBicHAED. That reminds me! [Taking out 
his pockethook.] Will you do me a favor f Take 
this check on the Bank of France to BaudeL I in- 
tended to ^ve it to him this morning as soon as he 
was up— 

PAUMisnB. For fifty thousand francs! What is 
this? 

MOKTBIOHABD. A loaU. 

Pauukb. Do you still continue to pay your debts, 
you overgrown child? 

MoNTBicHABD. Nouc of US is perfect! 

Patjlinb. If I were you. Baron, I should keep that 
little check — for a rainy day. 

Moktbichabd. No, no, it might rain on me before 
it does on him, and I should be forced to use it. Let 
us keep our honor intact I 

Pauunb. Take this back. I don't like to carry 
scraps of paper worth so much. 

Moktbichabd. Very well. Ill send it through 
the banker. Goodby, Oontesina. [He kisses her 
hand.] 

Pauuhb. Goodby, Baronino. [He goes out.] 
What a queOT mixture ! I thought he had more back- 
bone! Beally, I think there is no perfect man! 



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424 TEE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

[Chnevieve comes in looking for something.} 

Paumnb. Good morning, Genevieve. 

Genevieve. I beg yonr pardon, I didn't see yon I 
How are yon this morning f 

Pauline. Very well, as nsnaL 

Genevieve. As nsnal ! 

Paumne. Were yon looking for somethingf 

Genevieve. A little gold key I lost yesterday. 

Pauune. The key to the famons boxf The key 
to yonr heart f 

Genevieve. That's the one. 

Pauune. I told yon 8<Hneone wonld steal it. 

GENBviivB. Oh, I'll find it 

Pauune. [Putting on her hat.] Yon can find 
everything except lost time 

Genevieve. Are yon going ontf 

Pauune. To the dressmaker's. 

Genevieve. Can yon think of dresses 1 

Pauune. This is a happy day for me. 

GENBviliVE. Ton 're better, thent 

Pauune. Little Miss Obstinate, I'm as healthy 
as possible. 

Genevieve. Yon said something very different 
the other day. 

Pauune. No matter what happens, don't forget 
that yon've sworn never to repeat a single word of 
what I told yon. 

Genevieve. It's not fair to make me promise that 
— ^please don't keep me to it 

Pauune. I nmst. If yon talk too mndb to yonr 
grandparents abont me, they're likely to want to 
look after my welfare a little too carefully. I 
oonldnt remain here! Now, let's say notiiing more 
abont it. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 425 

GsNBviivB. But I should at least have done all I 
eonld? 

Paulina Yes, your conscience may be clear! 
See yon later, angeL [She goes out] 

QMNwnkvB. I have an idea — ^bnt how can I open 
the subject with grandfather and grandmother? 
[She sits down, her head resting on her hand. She 
is plunged in thought.] Oh, Henri 1 My dear Henri 1 

[The Marquis and the Marquise come in.] 

Mabquis. [Pointing to Oekevi^vb.] What is she 
thinking about f Statue of meditation ! 

Mabquisb. She looks very sad. 

Mabqxtis. Very. — ^What's the trouble, dearf 

Gbhsvi^vb. [Startled.] I didn't know you were 
there 1 

Mabqttisb. Didn't you hear us come inf What 
awful thought was absorbing you sof 

Mabquis, Has someone troubled youf 

ObnkviSvb. Oh, no. 

Mabqxtise. Do you want anything? 

GsNEVidvB. No. [Interrupting herself.] That 
is 

Mabquis. That is — ^yes. Come now, don't sulk — 
what is itf 

OBmeviivE. I want to see Italy! 

Mabquis. What? Italy — right off, at once? 

Gb jmkvjlAve . It's the spleen — ^I dont like Vienna. 
I'll be sick if I stay here any longer. 

Mabquisb. How long have you felt this way? 

GBNBvidvB. For a long time. I didn't intend to 
say anything about it — ^I hoped I should get over the 
f eeliBg. But it only gets worse. Please — ^take me to 
Borne 1 

Mabquis. This isn 't reasonable ! 

Mabquisb. Silly idea of a spoiled child! 



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426 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Gekevteye. No, I declare it isn't. I must make 
that trip. I don't usually take advantage of yonr 
kindness, do If Yon don't know what it's costing 
me now to ask yon to break in on your quiet life, your 
regular habits- 

Mabquis. Oh, our habits! The main considera- 
tion is that you should be happy, and it seems that 
you are not that here. What do you say, Madame? 

Mabquise. We are at home wherever Genevieve 
is happy. 

GBNBViivB. Well, if you take me to Bome, I prom- 
ise to sing like a song-bird from morning to night; 
you'll have me with you all day; there won't be any 
dances to deprive you of your granddaughter. We 'U 
have such a good time together! 

Mabquis. All together! 

Gbnbvievb. You can teach Pauline and me whist. 

Mabquis. Is Pauline to comef 

GsNEViivB. Of course — it's to be a family party! 
Every evening you'll have your little game just as 
you do here, only it'll be nicer. I'll be your partner 
and you may scold me every time I make you lose a 
king. Here you don't dare scold grandmother! 

Mabquis. Well, I don't say no to that. If the 
Marquise consents, we'll talk it over later. 

Gbkbvi^vb. Talk it overt 

Mabquis. We must have some time to become ac- 
customed to the idea. 

Gbnbvi^ve. And you will show me Bome your- 
self, grandfather. All young women go there with 
their husbands, who explain the sight to them. But 
I'd rather go with you. 

Mabquise. She's right, dear; we should take ad- 
vantage of the time she is still with us. 

Mabquis. If someone had told me an hour ago 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 427 

that we should spend the winter in Borne I should 
certainly have been surprised! 

OsNBViEVE. Then you will f Oh, thank you I 

Masqxjisb. She's looking better already. 

Oekevi^vs. When do we leave? 

Mabquis. [Laughing.] Give me my cane and 
hat 

Masqttisb. How much time will you give us to get 
ready? 

Genevieve. Ill get ready for you — ^you have only 
to step into the carriage. 

Masqtjis. Give us a week. 

G bneviAv e. Too long. You'd have time to change 
your mindl 

Mabquise. Four days ? 

Gbkevievb. Three. 

Mabqttis. You'll sing, you say, from morning to 
night? 

GENEvidvB. And I'll play whist with you. — ^ITl 
read your paper. — ^I'll do anything you like I I do 
love you so I [She throws herself into his arms.] 

M^xnsE. Really, I like the idea of this trip. 
Shall we leave tomorrow? 

GBNBViivB. I gave you three days — ^I'm reason- 
able! We must have time to persuade Pauline and 
HenrL 

Mabqtjise. I hardly think they'll object. 

GBNBviivE. If they do— well, you're the head of 
the family, grandfather; use your authority. 

Mabquis. It seems to me that you are the head 
of the family! 

Gbkevievb. I warn you now that if Pauline 
doesn 't come with us, I shan 't go. If you 're anxious 
for the trip you must induce her to come too. 

Mabquis. Very well. Mademoiselle, I shall make 
use of my authority. [To the Marquise.] When we 



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428 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

have great-grandchildren, they'll make ns walk aboat 
on all fours ! 

[A servant enters.] 

Servant. This gentleman [showing ,card] wonid 
like to see M. le Marquis. 

Mabqxtis. [Taking the card.] Mathieu — ^Adolphe. 
I don't know him. What does the gentleman look 
likef 

Sbbvakt. He is an actor I once saw at a little 
theater — ^I believe he is the same one. 

Mabqxtis. What can he want with me f An artist, 
a Frenchmanf Ask him to come in. [The servant 
goes out.] 

Mabquisb. [To QBmsvjkn.] Go to your room. 
[OBKEviibvB goes out. Adolphb enters.] 

Adolphe. Forgive me for disturbing you, Mon- 
sieur and Madame. I wished to see Mme. la Com- 
tesse, but she is out, and I took the liberty of 

Mabquis. Very glad to see you, my dear Mon- 
sieur — ^I have always had a liking for artists. 

Adolphb. I beg your pardon, Monsieur, but it is 
not as an artist that I come to see you, but as a man. 
You see before you a prodigal son who was drawn to 
the footlights by an irresistible sense of vocation, 
but who in leaving the stage has found again the 
position and manners befitting his status. 

Mabquis. [Dryly.] That is different. — ^What can 
Idoforyouf 

Adolphb. Let us go ba(^ a little, if you please. I 
lately had the honor of sitting at your table. 

Mabquis. My table? Are you dreaming. Mon- 
sieur t 

Adolphb. Not in the least. The scene — ^there is 
no other word for it — ^took place in this very room. 
There is the picture which we illuminated. [Look- 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 429 

ing at the Marquise.] An excellent likeness, 
Madame, very noble I My compliments I Good por- 
traits are so rare nowadays I I wanted to have one 
of Mme. Mathien 

Marquis. Indeed, Monsienrf 

Mabquisb. When was this? 

AnoiiPHE. Last Saturday. 

Mabquise. [To her husband.] The day Mme. 
Uorin came. We were dining ont. 

AnoiiPHE. Yes, you were not at home. There 
were four of us; your charming niece, an elderly 
lady— very distinguished-looking — a gay gentleman, 
and your humble servant, who had the good fortune 
to happen in at the time. 

Mabquis. What brought youf 

Adolphe. I came to offer a box for my benefit 
performance. 

Mabqxtis. Then why not come to the point at 
once. Monsieur? I don't go to the theater any 
longer, but, as a compatriot, I am ready to subscribe. 

Adolphb. Very kind of you, but the performance 
took place yesterday. 

Mabqttis. Was it successful f 

Adolphb. We didn't cover expenses. 

Mabquis. I see. What is the price of my box? 

Adolphb. I am not asking for charity. Monsieur. 
My father was a gentleman, one of the largest hard- 
ware merchants in Paris. 

Mabquis. [Smiling.] Noblesse oblige! I had no 
intention of offending you. Monsieur. 

Mabquisb. We are ready to offer any excuses. 

Adolphb. I ask for none, Madame. 

Mabquis. [Offering him a chair.] Sit down. 
[Taking his snuff-box from his pocket and handing 
it to Adolphb.] Will you have some snuff f 

Adolphb. Just a pinch. 



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430 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Mabqttis. How do you like itt 

Adolphe. It's delicious! So— where was It 

Mabquis. At the table 

Adolphe. Oh yes. After dinner, I was asked to 
sing. Naturally, I couldn 't think of receiving money 
for my services, because I acted in my capacity of 
man of the world. Then Mme. la Comtesse induced 
me to accept this pearl — as a present to my wife. 
[He takes the pearl from his pocket.] 

Mabquise. [Quickly.] Let me see it, Monsieur. 
[She takes it.] Didn't this belong to a diamond 
necklace f 

Adolphe. Yes, Madame. 

Mabquis. [To himself.] Very bad taste on her 
part! 

Adolphe. I wanted to keep it as a souvenir, but 
you see I was counting on that blessed benefit yester- 
day to pay off some debts 

Mabquis. Are you in debt! 

Adolphe. Gambling debts. [To himself.] At 
the bakery! [To the others.] They fall due in 
twenty-four hours, you understand, so that I had to 
take this to the jeweler's. 

Mabquis. And he told you what it was worth? 

Adolphe. Yes, Monsieur. Now, I can hardly be- 
lieve that Mme. la Comtesse intended to make me so 
valuable a present. 

Mabquis. So valuable! 

Adolphe. The jeweler offered me a thousand 
florins. 

Mabquise. Then it's real. [She knocks the pearl 
against the table.] Yes, it is ! 

Mabquis. What does this meanf 

Adolphe. What do you think f That I came here 
to ask for money? Nothing of the kind ! 

Mabquis. You bring it ! Shake hands, Monsieur, 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 431 

you are a tme gentleman. As for that pearl, my 
niece did know what she was doing when she gave it 
to yon — ^it is yours. But please allow me to buy it 
from you. I should like to return it to her. 
[He takes some bank-notes from his pocketbook.] 

Adolphb. Ah, M. le Marquis I 

Mabquise. [To the Marquis.} Poor fellow, he's 
so embarrassed I 

Mabquis. Since you seem to like my snuff, allow 
me to present the box to you — as a souvenir. [He 
takes out his snuff-box,] 

Adouphb. M. le Marquis, I promise you I shall 
always keep it. 

Mabquis. An revoir, my friend. 

Adolphb. Then you will allow me to come and see 
you occasionally t 

Mabquis. Honest people like yourself are always 
welcome in the homes of honest people like ourselves. 

AdoiiPhb. M. le Marquis, you have given me a 
signal honor I 

Mabquis. [Laughing.] The Order of the Snuff- 
box. [AnoiiPHE goes out.] A fine fellow — ^and he 
carries away with him one of my old-fashioned 
prejudices. [Henbi enters.] Here, nephew, give 
this pearl to your wife, and ask her not to play any 
more tricks on us. In other words, ask her not to 
try to deceive us with any more paste imitations I 

Hbnbi. [Going to the Mabquise.] What's this? 

Mabquisb. This pearl is real; so are the dia- 
monds, in all probability. 

Hbnbi. Then why did she lie to us 1 

Mabquisb. Probably she was afraid you would 
scold her for her extravagance. 

Hbnbi. I gave her fifty thousand francs with 
which to buy jewels. She should have told me she'd 
spent some of the money in advance. 



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432 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Mabquise. False pride, perhaps. 
Henri. Possibly. 

Mabquis. Here she is. I shall take particular 
pleasure in making it embarrassing for her I 

[Paulhste enters, wearing her hat. Henbi goes to 
the left and watches her intently.] 

You're just in time, niece. We were speaking of 
your paste imitations and marveling at the immense 
progress in chemistry. 

Pauline. [Taking off her hat and shawl.] Dia- 
monds are so cleverly imitated that it is almost im- 
possible to distinguish the artificial ones from the 
real. 

Mabquis. Will yon show me your necklace? 

Pauline. I haven't it any longer — ^I sent it back 
to the jeweler's. 

Mabquis. Why? 

Pauune. Madame told me that the Countess de 
Puygiron should not wear artificial jewels. 

Mabquise. Take care, child. 

Henbi. Aunt I 

Mabquise. No, I don't want to see her any more 
involved in her Ue. We know that the stones are 
real. 

Pauline. Well — ^I confess 

Mabquis. That you haven't returned them to the 
jeweler's? 

Pauline. I did return them I Yes ! I was afraid 
the trick would be discovered — so I put an end to all 
that nonsense I 

Henbi. How much did you lose on the exchange? 

Pauline. Nothing. 

Henbi. Nothing at all f 

Pauune. Of course not. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 433 

Henbi. Not even the price of this pearl t [He 
shows her the pearl.] 

Pauline. [To herself.] The devill [To the 
others.] I didn^t want yon to know— I was going to 
pay for it ont of my savings. 

Hbnsi. Where does the jeweler live? 

PAXjiJira. Never mind, I'll see to it. 

Henbi. Where does he livet 

Paxjunb. Monsienr, the way yon insist 1 

Henbi. Answer me and don't lie! 

Paumnb. Do yon snspect something? 

Henbi. [Violently.] Tes, I snspect that these 
diamonds were given yon by M. de Beansejonr! 

Pauijne. Oh, Henri I 

Mabquisb. Remember, she's yonr wife! 

Henbi. If I am mistaken, let her give me the ad- 
dress of the jeweler, and I'll make snre at once. 

Paxjune. No, Monsienr, I ref nse to stoop in or- 
der to jnstify myself. Yonr suspicion is too vile. 
Believe what yon like. 

Henbi. Ton forget that yon have no right to be 
so haughty about it. 

Patjunb. And why, if you please? I defy you 
to say t 

BsNm. You defy met 

Mabqxtis. You don't know what you are saying, 
my boy. It is very wrong of course for your wife to 
be so obstinate, but what the devill — ^think of it; 
you're accusing her of an infamy I 

Mabqxtise. [To Pauline.] Pauline, take pity on 
him I He doesn't know what he is saying. Prove 
that he's wrong. 

Paxjune. No, Madame, I shan't say another 
word. 

Henbl She's vile! She sold herself! 



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434 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Mabqxtis. Henri, your conduct is not that of a 
gentleman I Ask yonr wife's pardon. 

Henbi. I beg your pardon — all of you I That 
woman is Olympe Tavemy! [The Mabqxtis is thun- 
derstruck. The Mabquisb stands at his side. Pau- 
UKB is at the right, Henbi at the left. Henbi goes to 
his uncle, and falls to his knees.] Forgive me, 
father, for having dishonored the name yon bear, 
for having allowed that woman to impose on me, for 
having polluted this pure house by her presence I 

Mabqtjis. I disown you I 

Mabquisb. But he loved her then, and thought 
her worthy of us, because he believed her worthy of 
himself. This marriage was the fault of his youth, 
not a crime against his honor as a man. Don't dis- 
own him, dear — ^he is very unhappy I 

[After a pause, the Mabqxtis offers his hand to 
Henbi and helps him rise, unthout looking at him. 
Henbi kisses his atmt^s hands profusely.] 

Henbi. A duel to the end with M. de Beausejour 
now — ^pistols — ^ten paces ! 

Mabqxtis. Good! I'll be your second I [Henbi 
goes out. The Mabqxtis opens a drawer and takes 
out a case of pistols, which he places on the table in 
silence.] 

Paxtlinb. Don't trouble to get those ready, M. le 
Marquis. Your nephew is not going to challenge 
M. de Beausejour, for the excellent reason that M. de 
Beausejour left Vienna last night. I have just now 
allowed Henri to leave, because his presence here 
would have interfered with an explanation which we 
are going to have. 

Mabqxtis. An explanation between us. Mademoi- 
selle? Tour explanation will be made in court. 

Paxtunb. I can easily imagine that you woxdd like 
to drag me into court — ^that is what I shoxdd like to 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 435 

diacnss* There is one point which you know nothing 
of; I shall enlighten yon. 

Mabqihs. The lawyer will see to that. Leave ns. 

Paumnb. Very well [To the Mabqxjise.] Will 
yon be kind enongh to give MUe. Genevieve this gold 
keyf She has been looking for it since yesterday. 

Mabquisb. The key to the boxt 

PAUiiErra. Which contains the record of her 
hearths history. 

Mabqihse. How do yon happen to have itt 

Pauuke. I simply took it. Indelicate of me, was 
it not? You see, I have not been well brought up. 
I thought I should find in that box just the weapons 
I might need some day. — ^I was not mistaken. Will 
Mme. la Marquise be pleased to hear some extracts? 
[She gives the Mabquise a slip of paper.] 

Mabqttis. Another blackguard's trick I 

Pauuke. a rather brutal way of putting it ! But 
I am not the one who has to defend your grand- 
daughter! 

Mabqxjise. [Unfolding the paper.] This isn 't her 
handwriting! 

Paxjijkb. You don't think I'm foolish enough to 
let you have the original? That is in safe-keeping, 
in Paris. — Bead. 

Mabqxjise. [Reading.] * * April 17. — ^What is hap- 
pening to met Henri doesn't love Pauline any 
more. He loves me " 

Mabqxjis. [To his wife.] Wotdd Henri be 
80 ! 

Paxjune. Undignified as to make love to his 
cousin f Looks like it, doesn't itf But you needn't 
worry; I told her. 

Mabqxhs. You, Madame f 

Paxjune. And I told no more than the truth. 



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436 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Mabqxtis. [To his wife.] Does Henri love his 
consult 

Mabqxtisb. [Reading.] **I love him. Oh, now I 

am snre I have never felt otherwise toward him " 

Poor dear I — ^**God have pity on me I That love is a 
crime t Grant me the power to tear it from my heart I 
I considered him dead! Why has he come ba<^ 
again?" 

Mabquis. [To Pauunb.] Yes, why? 

Paxjunb. Continue — ^yon will heart 

Mabquisb. [Reading.] ** April 20. — ^My heart is 
deeply troubled ; what can I do with this love — ^which 
after all might become legitimate? He will always 
feel remorse. He is dishonored by the fearful hope 
which he feels — ^in spite of me. But is it my fault 
if Pauline cannot recover from the illness that is 
killing hert" 

Mabquis. You again? [Paxjunb bows.] 

Mabquisb. That is why she wanted to have us all 
go to Italyl 

Mabqxtis. [To Pauunb.] If a man were capable 
of such infamy, I'd shoot him like a dog! But a 
woman, it seems, may do anything! 

Paumnb. [To the Mabquis, smiling.] It is most 
fortunate that we have the privileges accorded us 
because of our weakness, you must admit. But to 
return to your granddaughter : I think the reading 
of her little romance will attract more admirers than 
husbands. Don't worry, though — ^I shan't publish 
this precious document unless you force me to — and 
you won't do that, I'm sure. 

Mabquis. Make your conditions, Madame. 

Pauunb. At last, thank God, you are reasonable. 
I shall follow suit. All I ask is an amicable separa- 
tion, and that I keep the money agreed on in my con- 
tract. 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 437 

Mabqttis. You will not use our namet 

Pauuns. Oh, M. le Marquis, I realize its value I 

Mabqttis. We shall pay you ! 

Paxtune. Tou are not rich enough. And what 
would you think of me for selling the title? No, I 
have it and I intend to keep it. An amicable separa- 
tion cannot take from me what a legal one cannot — 
you must at least be just. 

Mabquisb. [To her husband.] She has us bound, 
hand and foot! 

Mabquis. Very well I 

Patjlinb. Now we are agreed. You must arrange 
it all with Henri. I'll rid you of my company at 
once. [She turns to go.] 

Mabquis. One moment — ^first we must have Gene- 
vieve 's diary. 

Pauline. I told you it was in Paris. 

Mabquis. Write to the receiver of stolen goods to 
return it at once. 

Pauunb. Nothing is simpler. But really, if 1 
give up my only weapon, what guarantee shall I 
have- 



Mabqttis. My word as a gentleman. 

Pauldstb. Good ; between people of honor a given 
word is enough. Well, I give you my word that I 
shall not misuse my precious treasure. What would 
be the good for met 

Mabquis. The pleasure of revenge. You must 
hate us, for you realize how we despise you. 

Pautmnb. Is that the way you hope to persuade 
met 

Mabquisb. The Marquis uses strong expressions 
— ^it's very wrong of him. Be kind, Madame! 
Please, for our dear grandchild's sake, take pity on 
our gray hairs I I shall pray for you I 

Pauunb. [Smiling.] Good for evil, Madame ! 



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438 THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 

Mabqxhs. That will do. Marquise I [He p<is$es 
in front of Pattmnb, tvithout looking at her. To the 
Mabquisb.] Leave me alone with her. 

Mabqxtise. But, my dear 

Mabqxjis. [Conducting the Mabquise to the door.] 
Leave us I [The Mabqtjisb goes out. The Mabquis 
sends her a long kiss tuith his two hands, and comes 
down-stage again.] 

Patjukb. Yon 're pale, M. le Marqnis. 

Mabquis. [His arms crossed as he stands immov- 
able.] Yon would be paler than I if yon knew what 
I was thinking! 

Paxjmnb. Ah, threats? 

Mabquis. [Slowly.] We have begged, but in 
vain. My dear saint of a wife has prostrated herself 
before you. 

Pauline. Well? 

Mabquis. [About to seize her.] Well, you 

damned 1 [He stops.] Our salvation lies in our 

own hands now, understand? 

Pauline. I 'm not afraid ; I Ve gagged bigger men 
than you. 

Mabquis. [Staccato.] Write as I dictate. 

Pauline. [Shrugging her shoulders.] You're 
dawdling. Marquis. 

Mabquis. Write this instant, do you hear me? 
Tomorrow will be too late! 

Pauline. Because? 

Mabquis. Because if once my granddaughter's 
secret is known, the only possible reparation will be 
her marriage with your husband, and, by Qt)d, if that 
happens, she shaU marry him! 

Pauline. [SmUing.] You mean that you'll — 
suppress me? My dear Monsieur, do you take me 
for a child? [She tries to go.] 



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THE MARRIAGE OF OLTMPE 439 

Mabqihs. [Laying his hand on the pistols.] Take 
care! 

Paulinb, Why? Don^t mind about those pistols 
— ^they're not loaded. Now let's stop trifling — 
yon're bound to lose in the end. 

Mabquis. [Composing himself.] Write as I tell 
yon, and I wUl give yon half a million francs. 

Patjunb. Yon offer to bny my artillery on the 
day of battle? Yonr humble servant. Adien, dear 
Uncle [She goes toward the door at the left.] 

Mabquis. [Taking up a pistol.] If you try to 
pass that door, I shall kill you. 

Patjuke. [On the threshold, as she hums an air 
from Lbs Etudiants:] 

When you make love to a little girl 
And compromise her 

Mabquis. [He fires. Paumnb screams and falls, 
outside the door. The Mabquis takes another pistol 
and loads it.] God is my judge 1 



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EMILE AUGIER 

fl HEBE is so much matter in the dramatic 
works of Angier which does not prop- 
erly fall within the scope of the theater, 
that the casual reader may infer, incor- 
rectly, that Augier was more of a sodal 
reformer and champion of the home and 
fatherland than a man of the theater. 
True it is that in practically all his plays he attacks 
some form of social or political corruption, and 
stands forth to do battle in behalf of the domestic 
virtues. He condemns political trickery; he aims 
his shafts at the prostitute honored as a wife and 
mother, trying to break her way into the homes and 
families of the respectable; he ruthlessly flays all 
forms of marital infidelity; and he enters fearlessly 
the arena in questions of divorce and marriage — 
but with all this, he is primarily a dramatist His 
works are plays, as time has proved. Augier does 
not, however, take a subject at hazard, as Pinero 
often does, and then write a play; nor does he, as is 
usual with his disciple, Brieux, write his play to fit 
a thesis: his themes evolve naturally out of the 
fable, with the apparent tmconsciousness of art. He 
is deeply concerned with the vices and virtues of 
mankind, but rarely does he allow his convictions to 

Biosraphical Note. — ^Emile Augier was born in 1820. He once 
eaid lliat his life was devoid of events. His first play, produeed in 
1844, met with considerable success, and was foUowed not long after 
hj a series of plajs which brought him first esteem and finally fame. 
For nearly thiity-five years he continued to put forth plays at regular 
and frequent intervals. Bespeeted and beloved in his country, he died 
in 1889. 

440 



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EMILE AUGIER 441 

warp the dramatic texture of Ms plays. Barely, too, 
is he so fearlessly didactic as his f eUow-playwright^ 
Dumas fil$. Augier has has been compared with 
Moliere; it is as a man of the theater and a painter 
of character that the analogy holds. 

Augier 's debut was made with a graceful comedy 
in two acts: Le Cygiie (1844): This is in verse, and 
recounts the story of a repentant debauchee. His 
next play, Un Homme de bien (1845), likewise in 
verse, in spite of its hesitancy in the development of 
plot and the delineation of character, indicates the 
path which Augier was to tread; here he '^manifests 
his intention for the first time to paint a picture of 
contemporary Hfe, and attack the customs of the 
day — ^in short, to write a social comedy. ''* 

But Augier did not at once enter into and develop 
his new manner. During the next few years, he con- 
tinued to write verse plays in which the thesis was 
more or less prominent. L'Aventuridre (1848), 
GabrieUe (1849), Le Joueur de Flute (1850), Diane 
(1852), Philiberte (1853), and Paul Forestier (1868) 
are primarily comedies in which the purely dramatic 
element predominates, although L^Aventuriire and 
GabrieUe are a closer approximation to the later 
manner than the others. 

L'Aventuriere is a modem play in spite of the 
fact that the scene is laid in the Italian Benaissance. 
It teUs the story of an adventuress who has managed 
to get into the good graces of a rich merchant of 
Padua. He is about to give up friends and family 
for the woman, when his son, who has been away for 
ten years, appears upon the scene. Assuming a dis- 
guise, he reveals the true character of Clorinde to 
his father and effects a breaking-off of their relation- 

* Heniy Gaillard de Champis: EmUe Augier et la C<m4die 9oeidle 
(QTaaeet, Pari!, 1910). 



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442 EMILE AUGIER 

ship. The father and family are saved and the 
repentant woman goes into a convent. 

If in L'Aventuriere Augier was still undecided as 
to the means of expression best fitted to his tempera- 
menty or as to the purpose to which his powers were 
to be put, in Le Mariage d'Olympe, six years later, 
he fotmd his most forceful and realistic manner. 
Meantime, there is one play, forming a connecting 
link between the wsLveringL Aventuriere and Olympe. 
Gabrielle (1849) is, in spite of its poetic form, a 
realistic play. The husband who labors hard for 
wife and family, the wife who is bored and seeks a 
fuller realization of self in the husband's friend — 
this is a familiar situation. But it should be borne 
in mind that a serious treatment of such a story was, 
sixty-five years ago, something of a departure. 
Scribe's stock in trade was the menage a trois, but 
infidelity with him was always a subject for comedy. 
Augier 's play then was a challenge, both to the 
Romanticists and the **Vaudevillistes.'' When 
Julien Chabriere opens the eyes of his wife and her 
would-be lover to the dangers and miseries of their 
projected step, the lover goes away and Gabrielle, 
falling to her knees before her husband, speaks the 
celebrated line: 

**0 pere de famillel poete, je t'aime!'* 

Leaving the realm of poetic comedy, with its at- 
tached ** moral'' and more or less optimistic denoue^ 
mentj in 1854 Augier threw the gauntlet in the face 
of the Romanticists who applauded La Dame aux 
camMias of Dumas /?k— commonly known in English 
as CamUle. A curious change in public taste and 
manners had allowed large numbers of demi-mon- 
daines to assume a place of distinction and honor in 
the social life of the day. This was due perhaps to 



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EMILE AUGIER 443 

the nmnerotis political transformations which 
France was at the time trndergoing, as well as to 
the spreading of the ideas of the Bomantic school of 
art and literature. When, in 1852, Dumas fits made 
a prostitute the sympathetic heroine of a play, and 
brought forward the doctrine that *'she will be for- 
given because she has loved deeply*' a feeling of 
revolt awoke in the breast of Augier, and he wrote 
Le Mariage d'Olympe. This is one of the most 
directly didactic of all his works; it was aimed 
primarily against the * ' Beign of the courtesan* * ' He 
says, in short, that such women as Olympe Tavemy 
do undoubtedly exist, that the men are at fault as 
much as the women for that fact; possibly he even 
secretly sympathizes with her, but he denies her the 
right to marry into good families. When the Mar- 
quis de Puygiron shoots Olympe, after endeavoring 
to force her to give up the family name which she 
has stolen, declaring tiiat God is his judge, Augier 
issues his final word on the question. 

Le Mariage d^ Olympe, a play with a purpose, 
stands apart for that reason from the great mass of 
Angler's plays. In the three short and well-built 
acts, the author has merely sketohed his characters; 
every effort has been bent on the idea, the facts, the 
thesis. Just so much of characterization as is needed 
to carry the story is given. The admirable and dis- 
gusting scene which closes the second act is one of 
the most trenchant and poignant which ever came 
from this dramatist's pen. Nowadays, even after 
Zola and Becque and the Theatre Libre dramatists, 
it strikes a note of horror. How it must have 
shocked an audience of the fifties I 

Although the play failed,* it aroused considerable 

* Dae perliaps to fhe fact that the pnblie had had enough of the sob- 
jeet: La Dame anus eamilias, Lea FiUea de marhre, and Le Demi- 
monde, all treated a similar theme. 



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444 EMILE AUGIER 

discussion and a good deal of adverse critieism. 
Stilly its importance in the dramatic and intellectual 
development of the dramatist was great. It was his 
first straightforward declaration of independence. 
From 1854 on, he followed the path he had himself 
opened with this early play. 

**The Reign of the Courtesan*' was not ended by 
the plays of the day, but Augier did not cease for 
that reason in his attempts to check its influence. 
Twelve years after Le Mariage d'Olympe he wrote 
La Contagion. The development of society and its 
relation to the fallen woman may be clearly traced 
by a comparative study of L^Aventuriere, Le 
Mariage d'Olympe, and La Contagion. In the first 
play, the woman is merely an exception, an adven- 
turess who happened to ** break into*' society and a 
good family. In Le Mariage d'Olympe she is a demi- 
mondaine who has carefully planned to obtain for 
herself, at any cost, a noble name. But she is 
checked in time — ^by a pistol-shot. Twelve years 
later the Olympes and Clorindes are no longer ex- 
ceptions ; the rehabilitated courtesan has triumphed. 
By skilful manipulation she has insinuated her way 
into a position of equality with that of the respected 
mother and wife, and has even begun to corrupt her. 
**The consequences** [of this triumph of the cour- 
tesan], says De Champris, **were deplorable. As 
a result of hearing of these ^ladies,* of reading about 
them in the newspapers, of seeing their gorgeous 
equipages, of passing their pretty homes, applaud- 
ing them on the stage or admiring their silhouettes 
in the fashion magazines, society women fell a prey 
to contradictory feelings and ideas : the resentment 
at being occasionally deserted for these women, the 
curiosity to know these enemies, so far away yet so 
near, the wish to rival them, ^mished them with 



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EMILE AUGIER 445 

weapons, perhaps even a certain desire for forbid- 
den fruity and gave birth to a regret at being forced 
to pay for a reputation in society which entailed so 
rigid a restraint. For these various reasons, many 
honest women played the part of demi-mondaines/* 
This was the contagion against which Augier raised 
his voice. The clever and diabolical Navarette, mis- 
tress of a wealthy man of the world, succeeds in 
mining her lover and bringing his family to her feet. 
By subtle scheming she compromises the Baron 
d'Estrigaud's married sister, is witness of her infi- 
delity, and finally succeeds in holding the entire 
family at her mercy. 

A pistol-shot will do no good here: the evil has 
gone too far; society itself is corrupted. The 
woman, successfully rehabilitated, rich, held in high 
esteem, has at last attained that position for which 
she has striven. 

The war of 1870 and the fall of the Empire put a 
stop to the particular state of affairs which Augier 
had fought against. Barely in his later plays (ex- 
cept in Jean de Thommeray) did he again attack the 
question. To Brieux and Hervieu and Frangois de 
Curel he left the work of analyzing deeper motives 
and making a study of the various ramifications, 
some of which were still invisible in Augier 's day — 
but this is current history. 

The three plays which have just been discussed 
are sufficient to show that Augier is the statmch 
champion of the family and the home. His hatred 
of the prostitute is not so much a matter of personal 
feeling as a social one. Whether or no he believes in 
what is now known as segregated vice or whether as 
a man he was occasionally lenient in matters of sex, 
is beside the question: he saw that the home, of all 
institutions in France the most important, was 



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446 EMILE AUGIER 

threatened by a f earf nl invasion, and he did his best 
to pnt an end to it. 

It will be seen that Angier's plays so far consid- 
ered, are not in chronological order. L'Aventuridre, 
Le Manage d^Olympe, and La Contckgion, have been 
grouped together for the purpose of observing a 
particular trend in the thought of the author. Mean- 
time, such widely different plays as PhUiherte, La 
Pierre de touche, Le Gendre de M. Poirier, and 
Les Eff routes made their appearance. 

OabrieUe was the first play to treat of a more in- 
sidious evil, a greater danger to the home, which 
Augier was ever so eager to protect: conjugal infi- 
delity. After the comparatively timid OabrieUe 
came Les Lionnes pauvres (1858), which stands in 
much the same relation to the earlier play as Le 
Mariage d^Olympe did to L*Aventuriere. Here 
again is the story of a woman whom the love of 
luxury, too much idleness, and a natural penchant, 
lead to take a lover. The honest and industrious 
husband is long kept in ignorance of the fact, believ- 
ing that his wife's expensive clothes are paid for 
out of her savings. Besides being deceived, in the 
French sense of the word, he is being partly sux>- 
ported in the meantime by his wife's lover. At 
last he learns the truth, and is even willing to for- 
give his wife, but when she declares her unwilling- 
ness to restore the money given her, on the ground 
that she is ** afraid of poverty,** the husband 
leaves her. He seeks consolation in the home 
of Th6r^se and L6on Lecarmier. Then Therese 
is forced to tell him that her husband, Leon, is 
Seraphine's lover. SSraphine, then, going the path 
of least resistance, decides to remain a kept woman. 
Thenceforth she joins the ranks of Olympe and 
Navarette. 



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EMILE AUGIER 447 

Angler's sanity, his healthy attitnde toward hn- 
manity, his belief in the eternal rightness of things, 
oonld not long remain obscored by the temporary 
pessimism incident to the writing of Lea lAonnes 
pauvres. In 1858, the same year, he tnmed to light 
comedy, and in La Jeunesse produced a genial if 
somewhat conventional play. In spite of its thesis 
—that money is an evil, especially in the case where 
yonng people are forced into marriages of conve- 
nience — ^it can scarcely be classed among the im- 
portant social plays. It marks a return to the 
earlier manner. 

The question of money, lightly touched upon in 
La Jeunesse, is the second of the important prob- 
lems which is intimately concerned with the welfare 
of the family and the home. From this time on, sex 
and money are to assume a position in the front rank 
of Augier's work. 

Closely allied in spirit with La Jeunesse is Un 
Beau Mariage (1859). The question, should a poor 
man marry a rich wifef is handled with keen in- 
sight, and answered in the negative. Pierre Cham- 
baud, a poor young chemist, marries the rich Clem- 
eaiiae Bemier, whose mother, possessing nearly all 
the money, literally supports the daughter and her 
husband. Pierre soon becomes a mere figure-head 
in his own house and, as a result of the social ambi- 
tions of his wife and mother-in-law, is forced to give 
up his scientific pursuits. Soon losing the love and 
respect of the two women, he complains to them, and 
is made to feel more keenly than ever the utter deg- 
radation of his position. A certain Marquis de la 
Boche-PingoUey has been over-assiduous in his at- 
tentions to Pierre's mother-in-law. When Pierre de- 
mands that the Marquis either marry Madame Ber- 
nier or cease his visits, he is humiliated once again 



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448 EMILE AUGIER 

by being told by his mother-in-law that the Marquis 
is in her home. Receiving no help or sympathy 
from his wife, he goes to live with his friend, Michel 
Ducaine, to work out an experiment which, if suc- 
cessful, will revolutionize science and render him 
celebrated. Fearful of the scandal and incon- 
venience of a separation, Clementine sends the Mar- 
quis to Pierre in order to effect a reconciliation. 
Pierre is willing to return to his wife, but only on 
the condition that the mother-in-law is to have noth- 
ing to do with them. Preparatory to making his final 
experiment, which, we are told, will either HU Pierre 
or make him a successful man, he sends a letter to 
his wife. Clementine arrives at the laboratory just 
in time to be with her husband in the hour of danger. 
She has somehow come to see his real worth and is 
willing to sacrifice comfort and luxury for his sake. 
She hides during the experiment, and when the seven 
minutes necessary for its consummation are at an 
end, she cries * * Saved I ' ' and f aUs into Pierre 's arms : 

**0h, Pierre, my love, my life I We might have 
died together 1 But you are given to me again! 
What happiness! Gk)d is good! How I love you! 
Forgive me! I thought you were a coward, I 
thought you were base, and I hated you! Now I 
adore you ! Oh, courage, oh, genius ! Forgive your 
comrade, your handmaid!" 

The last act shows a pretty picture of Pierre and 
Clementine at home ; she is the incarnation of domes- 
ticity, and he, of independence and happiness. The 
mother-in-law, distracted at not being able to help 
the couple, ends by purchasing Pierre's discovery. 
The play's weakness is so flagrant as hardly to call 
for further comment. With so good a theme the 
dramatist ought surely to have developed a more 
credible story, and sought a more logical denoue^ 



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EMILE AUGIER 449 

ment. To begin with, his thesis was irretrievably 
weakened by making Clementine the sort of woman 
she was. If, during the entire straggle with his 
wife and her mother, Pierre had once received some 
sign of sympathy from Clementine, we might have 
hoped and looked for her ultimate change, bnt when, 
having stood throughout against him, she finally 
does go to him and, at the risk of her Uf e, stands at 
his side during the experiment, and then — after his 
experiment succeeds — ^falls into his arms, and for- 
ever after mends his clothes, we cannot doubt that 
we have to do with melodrama. Had Clementine at 
first been in earnest and made an honest endeavor to 
understand Pierre, and then gradually been cor- 
rupted by her mother and her mother's money, and 
then eventually been made to see the good qualities 
in Pierre, we might have believed. As it is, the 
last two acts spoil the play. 

Technically, Un Beau Manage is important. A 
man of science as a serious stage-figure, a hero in 
fact, was a decided novelty in the 'fifties, and, if 
the play accomplished nothing else, it at least opened 
the way for the modems, and broadened the field 
of the theater. Possibly the doctors and other 
scientists in the plays of Brieux and Hervieu and 
Curel owe something to the earnest treatment of 
the chemist in this early play of Augier. 

Ceintwre doree (1855) is little more than an ex- 
panded fable; it might well be termed Tainted 
Money. The rich merchant Eoussel has an only 
daughter, Caliste, who seeks among numerous suit- 
ors for her hand one who cares nothing for her 
money. Finally, M. de Tirelan makes his appear- 
ance, and Boussel ofiPers to make him his son-in-law. 
But Tirelan, whose father has been ruined in busi- 
ness by Boussel, and who has scruples against 



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450 EMILE AUGIER 

marrying for money, refuses. Boossel swallows the 
insult, Tir^an decides to go away, and Boussel turns 
to another suitor. This one Caliste is about to ac- 
cept when she learns that Tir61an really loves her 
and will not ask for her hand because of her money. 
Meantime, Boussel has been particularly sensitive to 
allusions to the source of his fortune, and this sus- 
ceptibility finally assumes the form of monomania. 
Again Boussel makes overtures to Tirelan and 
offers to restore the money which he took from the 
young man's father. He is again refused. The 
knot is cut at last when it is learned that Boussel is 
ruined by unwise speculation. Tirelan is at last 
free to declare his love to Caliste; he can marry her 
now that the barrier of fortune is removed. 

The play is so light that it hardly deserves a place 
among the serious works of Augier. Yet in its own 
way it constitutes a further document upon the social 
system in which hard cash plays so large and impor- 
tant a role. 

To turn from the idealistic and timid Ceinture 
doree to Les Effrontes (1861) is to realize in the 
most forceful manner the extreme poles of the genius 
of Emile Augier. The earlier play appears little 
other than the work of a dilettante beside the later. 
Les Effrontes is a compact yet varied picture of 
manners, in which the principal portrait is the par- 
venu Vemouillet, a vulgar, unscrupulous journalist 
with money and a vast amount of aplomb, or 
** nerve.'* Bespected by one, he is held in fear by 
all, for he is influential and rich. 

Politically, socially, dramatically, Les Effrontes is 
a work of the first importance. It was the first play 
to treat in a realistic manner the power of the press 
and to paint a truly modem villain. Says Vemou- 
illet : **I have put my money to the only use to which 



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EMILE AUOIER 451 

it has not hitherto been pnt : making public opinion. 
I have in my hands the two powers which the Empire 
has always disrupted: money and the press. Each 
heli>8 the other. I open up new roads to them; I am 
in fact making a revolution." Although Les Ef- 
f rentes is at the same time a comedy of character 
and manners^ with a complicated intrigue and a love 
story, it was in its day considered mainly as an 
attack on the press. But what was not realized so 
clearly in the many heated discussions aroused by 
the piece, was that Augier was not so much con- 
cerned with the actual state of the press — ^which was 
and is bad enough — ^but with the power which the 
press, backed by money, may exert. His purpose 
was larger; it was humanitarian. 

Again he had enlarged the scope of the theater, 
and given the stage a figure which is today one of 
the most familiar and most often portrayed. 

In several of Augier 's plays there is a mingling 
of themes which, wl^e it adds to the atmosphere and 
interest, often renders any distinct classification of 
genre, a difficult task. **Money,'' **Sex," **Poli- 
tics," and such more or less arbitrary headings are 
not sufficient to cover more than half of Angler's 
plays. Le Gendre de M. Patrier, for example, is a 
comedy of character, as well as a comedy of senti- 
ment, a picture of the nobility and the bourgeoisie, 
and a study of the money question. La Pierre de 
tcuche (1853), and Maitre Guerin (1865), although 
they are not so unified as Le Mariage d^Olympe, 
may still be satisfactorily classified under the head- 
ing of Money. ' * The &rst is another of the lighter 
plays with a ** moral'*; it shows the evil results of 
the acquisition of large smns of money by those who 
do not know its proper uses ; the second is a study 
in the character of a bourgeois merchant 



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452 EMILE AUOIER 

Les EffronUs has been classed among the works 
of Angier in which money was shown to be at the 
base of a great part of the evils of the social system. 
It is likewise one of the three political plays, of which 
the others are Le FUs de Giboyer and Lions et 
Renards. 

Le FUs de Giboyer (1862) was for the French of 
the day what was called an anti-clerical play. The 
Jesnits as politicians were attacked, or believed 
themselves to be, so that national discussions and 
conflicts arose, and bitter counter-attacks were 
made on the author and what was supposed to 
be his party. Angler denies* that his play is 
political; he declares that it deals with society in a 
general way. As a story of father and son it indu- 
bitably suffers from what now appears as a great 
deal of topical and contemporaneous discussion, but 
that is rather the fault of the times and of the sub- 
ject The clever but unscrupulous bohemian scrib- 
bler, Giboyer — ^who, together with his protector 
D^Auberive, was one of the principal characters in 
Les Effrontes — ^has sold himself to the rich Marquis. 
Through political intrigues, hypocrisy, venality of 
the basest kind, Giboyer makes his way, until at last 
through his love for his son, his designated suc- 
cessor, he undergoes a moral rehabilitation. Though 
the psychology of the transformation may be true 
enough, and though it would doubtless have been 
more credible had it been developed at greater length 
by a novelist like Balzac or (Jeorge Eliot, somehow 
we cannot believe in the sudden change, and are 

* In hiB preface to Le FUi de OUboyer Axigiet njni ''In spite 
of what has been afBnned, this eomedy ia not a politiea] piece in tiie 
enrrent eenM of the term: it is a social play. It attacks and defends 
only ideas, abstract conceptions of all sorts of gOTemment. * * • 
The antaiponism between the old and the modem principles, that, in 
brief, is Vie theme of the play. I defy anyone to find a single word 
to warrant the assumption that I have gone beyond this.'' 



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EMILE AUGIER 453 

prone to ask how it happens that Giboyer can be re- 
deemed by love for his son any more than conld 
Olympe becanse Henri once loved her? 

Li&ns et Renards (1869) is valuable and histori- 
cally interesting as a comedy of manners and char- 
acter. It is another attack on the Jesnits. But the 
complicated intrigae, the occasional obscurity of the 
motivation, were sufficient to account for the failure 
of the play. 

Augier realized, as Balzac did, that money was the 
root of much evil, and, in the midst of the social re- 
adjustments which France was undergoing in the 
nineteenth century, he made money one of the great- 
est of his protagonists. In the struggle between the 
classes, in the personal relationship of the family, 
the race for money and power was almost always the 
prime reason for social degradation and disintegra- 
tion. Social position is mainly a question of money. 
Olympe Tavemy attempted to climb, and the family 
suffered; Gabrielle's husband was forced to spend 
the time he should have had with his wife, in earning 
the money he thought was supporting her; mar- 
riages of love, of inclination, are forced to give way 
before marriages of convenience, which mean ruin 
for the home and the family; the press and the 
Church strive for power, political and financial — 
the very basis and sinew of politics is cash. Prance, 
says Augier, is money-mad, and a nation which for- 
gets what is of supreme importance— family and 
home and the virtues of old — ^is heading for destruc- 
tion. 

The remaining important plays are all more or 
less concerned with money, though sometimes it 
hovers in the background, only apprehended, and 
sometimes is obscured by other considerations; but 
it is always present. 



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454 EMILE AUOIEB 

Le Oendre de M. Poirier (1855), written in col- 
laboration with Jules Sandeau, is without doubt one 
of the finest comedies of character ever written. 
The figure of the bonhomme Poirier is one of the mem- 
orable figures in dramatic literature. In this play 
Augier was less concerned with social considerations 
than was his wont, although money again is the basis 
for the action. The Marquis de Presles, a ruined 
member of the aristocracy, has in a way entered into 
a business pact with Poirier, but the business deal- 
ings of the two have been utilized by the authors 
chiefly as a frame in which to depict and contrast the 
nobleman and the bourgeois. The plot is of neces- 
sity rather thin: character is the important consid- 
eration. 

The last three important plays of Augier, written 
after the war, might possibly be classified under the 
general headhigs which we have so far been using, 
but eadi, by reason of a comparative novelty of 
theme, may well be placed apart in different cate- 
gories. The plays in question are Jean de Thorn- 
meray, Modems Coverlet, and Les FourchambaulL 
Besides these, there is, however, Le Prix Martin, 
written in collaboration with Eugene Labiche, a 
conventional and amusing little comedy. 

Jean de Thommeray (1873) — ^written with Jules 
Sandeau, whose novel of the same name was used as 
a basis — is a patriotic piece, in which a young aristo- 
crat, succumbing to the demoralizing influences of the 
capitcd, finally redeems himself by fighting for the 
Patrie. The value of the play lies in the sep- 
arate pictures of the life of the aristocratic De 
Thommerays, rather than in the story. Jean's re- 
demption is not very satisfactorily explained, while 
the plot is loose and our interest consequently wav- 
ering. 



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EMILE AUGIEB 455 

Madame Caverlet (1876) is a passionate plea in 
favor of divorce. Again it points ont an evil in the 
social system which militates against the good of the 
family. Sir Edward Merson and his wife have been 
separated for a number of years. She has found 
consolation in the upright and honorable M. Caver- 
let, with whom, and her two children, she has been 
living in what is all but a legal state of marriage. 
When the daughter, however, is about to marry, 
Caverlet and ^'Madame Caverlet" confess to the 
suitor's father the truth of the case, and the pro- 
posed marriage is broken off without delay. Merson 
then appears, demands his son and daughter, forces 
Caverlet to go away, and threatens to break up the 
family until he is offered a large sum of money to go 
to Switzerland and there become a citizen. This 
ameliorates the situation, as the wife can then obtain 
a divorce and become the lawful wife of Caverlet. 
But Henri, the son, completely disillusioned, joins 
the army and goes to a foreign country. The mar- 
riage then takes place. 

We can but ieel that Augier's case would have 
been stronger had he not loaded the dice. If Mer- 
son had really cared more for his wife than for her 
money, and had he insisted on his rights, then the in- 
justice of the law and its bitter consequences would 
have been more strikingly proved. 'ELad Augier, as 
Hervieu did in La Loi de Vhomme, pushed his 
thesis to its logical conclusion, we should have had a 
more touchingly poignant play, as well as a stronger 
plea for divorce. 

Les Fourchambavlt (1878) is the last play of 
Elmile Augier. In structure, in character aoialysis, 
it shows no diminution in the dramatist's powers; 
it is indeed a proof of his deepening sympathy and 
broader understanding of human Ufe; it shows a 



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456 EMILE AUGIER 

brighter optimism and a more deep-rooted faith in 
the basic goodness of humanity. Viewed from a 
strictly logical angle, the play may seem reactionary 
if not contradictory, yet the young man in the early 
'fifties denouncing the fallen Olympes and Clorin- 
des and Navarettes, had with increasing years come 
to realize that there were exceptions in life, that 
human nature cannot always be eviL Leaving aside 
particular questions of the day, wishing to attack 
no specific institution, law, or social wrong, he bases 
his play on frailty and human goodness, infusing the 
whole with a generous portion of good and kmdly 
humor and gentle satire. Madame Fourdiambault 
is after all only silly and weak, not criminally am- 
bitious. Leopold, too, is weak, like his father, no{ 
wicked. Madame Bernard, though she once sinned, 
has redeemed her error by a life of service. Marie 
and Bernard are almost too good. If a criticism 
may be urged, it is that the play is too kindly and 
optimistic Bernard's and Marie's rhapsody on 
marriage is a little too much like a sermon. This 
play is Augier's idealistic swan-song. It seems that, 
tired of attacking, worn out by the sight of vice and 
stupidity, he was prompted, in his old age, to raise 
up an ideal of virtue, and make that ideal triumph 
over eviL 

Augier is the Balzac of the French stage of the 
last century: his power of observation, his common 
sense, his straightforward and honest way of speak- 
ing the truth, the great extent and variety of his 
work, bring him into closer relationship with the 
great noveUst than any other dramatist of his time. 
Considered as a moraUst or social reformer, as ex- 
ponent of the domestic virtues, as champion of the 
fireside, he is of great importance, but as a painter 
of the Uf e of his time, of the bourgeoisie as well as 



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EMILE AUGIEB 457 

of the aristocracy, as a literary artist depicting liv- 
ing men and women, he occupies a position in French 
literature and drama as sure, though possibly not so 
exalted^ as that of Molidre and Balzac. 

Babbett H. Clabk. 



Plays by Eiolb Axjgieb: 

Le Cygue 1844 

XJn Homme de bien 1845 

L'AventuriSre 1848 

GabrieUe 1849 

Le Joueur de Flute 1850 

Diane 1852 

PhiUberte 1853 

La Pierre de touche 1853 

Le Mariage d'Olympe 1854 

Ceinture doree 1855 

Le Gendre de M. Poirier 1855 

(In collaboration with Jules Sandeau) 

La Jeunesse 1858 

Les Lionnes pauvres 1858 

Un Beau Mariage 1859 

Les Effrontes 1861 

Le Fils de Giboyer 1862 

Maitre Guerin 1865 

La Contagion 1866 

Paul Forestier 1868 

Lions et Benards 1869 

Jean de Thommeray 1873 

(Li collaboration with Jules Sandeau) 

Madame de Caverlet 1876 

Le Prix Martin 1877 

(Li collaboration with Eugftne Labiche) 
Les Fourchambault 1878 



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458 EMILE AUGIER 

La Chasse au Roman (1851), written in collabora- 
tion with Jnles Sandean, is not indnded in the Thi- 
dter complet. UHahU vert, in collaboration with 
Alfred de Musset, and Le PosUscriptwm^ are one- 
act plays. 

Le Fits de Oiboyer — as The Son of Giboyer— is 
to be found in translation in The Universal An- 
thology, also, translated by Benedict Papot, in The 
Drama, No. 2. L^ Habit vert and Le Post-scriptwn 
are translated by Barrett H. Clark, in The World's 
Best Plays Series (Samuel French) (as The Qreen 
Coat and The Post-script). 

Alfred A. Knopf wiU publish soon a volume of 
four plays by Augier (**The Marriage of Olympe,'* 
"The Son-in-Law of M. Poirier,'' "The House of 
Pourchambault," and "The Post-Script'') f trans- 
lated, with an introduction by Barrett H. Clark, and 
a prefatory letter by Brieux. 

References. 
French : 
Leopold Lacour, "Trois Th^tres.*' 1880. 
Edouard Pailleron, "Emile Augier." 1889. 
Parigot, "EmUe Augier." 1890. 
Antoine Benoist, "Essais de critique." 
Henri Gaillard de Champris, "Emile Augier et 
la comedie sodale." 1910. (Contains an ex- 
tensive bibliography.) 

English: 
Brander Matthews, "French Dramatists of the 

Nineteenth Century." Scribner. 
W. N. Guthrie, in "The Drama," No. 2. 



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THE PAESEB DRAMA. 

JLTHOXJGH the theatrical business in In- 
dia seldom brings a fortune to the 
Europeans who are engaged in it, the 
Parsee companies — ^judging from the 
support with which they meet and from 
the number which are to be found in all 
parts of the country — at least thrive. 
**Hot season '' or **cold season/' year 
in and year out, from Peshawar in the extreme north 
(where the ** bhang ''-excited **ghazt" makes it the 
business of his life to stab the inoffensive white man 
in the bac&) to Tuticorin in the south, and from 
muggy Bombay to Calcutta, these troupes perform 
most strenuously. Such is their enterprise that 
they even halt at the small, insignificant ^'stations" 
in the hope of whirling in the natives from the ad- 
joining villages. For the Hindoos and Mahometans, 
in their common love of a ^^tamasha," sink the dif- 
ferences of religious opinion, and vie with each 
other in appreciating what is going forward. Sup- 
port is occasionally forthcoming from the easily- 
pleased section of the ** Sahib-log" (English people), 
who, fcmte de miettx, perhaps, look in at the show in 
the hope that it will while away an hour or so of a 
dull and, therefore, unprofitable existence. 

In Bombay and Calcutta the Parsee players are 
housed in a theatre, while the boxes are so arranged 
that the native women, who, being ^'purda nashin," 
dare not show their faces and forms in public, can 

459 



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460 THE PARSEE DRAMA 

see without the other members of the audience even 
knowing that they are in the house. Sometimes, 
however, a catastrophe occurs. Owing to the natural 
carelessness of the Indian, the curtains, which are 
drawn across the box, part company with the poles 
on which they are slung; and though they are hastily 
adjusted, the squeals and squalls of the occupants 
suggest that horrible tortures are being inflicted 
behind the sheltering ^^ purdahs.'' Should the acci- 
dent happen while the theatre is in darkness, there is 
no harm done; but if the lights are turned up, there 
is — ^well, the very deuce to pay! The women de- 
clare that they are for ever dishonoured; and their 
attendants, with much wailing and gnashing of teeth, 
lament the day they were bom and the indignity 
which has been put upon them. 

The consternation of the females, however, is noth- 
ing to that of the husbands. Frenzied invective ; ap« 
peals to the onlookers to turn their faces the other 
way; wholesale abuse, which is levelled at the cower- 
ing black minions ; threats to give the manager the 
slipper, the favorite Eastern form of punishment; 
much beating of breasts and tearing of hair: that is 
how beauty in distress makes known the state of her 
mind. The husband, advancing to the front of the 
box, partly that he may shield the occupants, who, 
scuttling Uke rabbits, hide in comers and bolt into 
the passage, and partly that he may more eflPectively 
deliver himself of what he has to say, is splendidly 
furious. **Sons of dogs I How dare you let your 
impious gaze rest upon the ladies of my haremf 
May your graves and those of your female 
relations be eternally defiled; may all Mahome- 
tans among you be burnt and may all Hindoos be 
buried. . . . How shall I ever survive this in- 
dignity? . . . The son of a pig who put up the 



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THE PAB8EE DRAMA 461 

curtain certainly shall be dismissed, and as to the 
fool who employed him, he, too, shall go. . . . 
Shaitan-logt Accursed one! Look not this way I 
. . • I see yon, Bam Dass, and yon also, Mahomet 
Din, In a moment I will be upon yon — ^when I will 
<diange the shape of yonr faces so that your own 
mothers may not know yon t • • • Pigs and dogs, 
alL • • . Fonl carrion that yon are, I will leave 
yon just enough life in yonr vile bodies to crawl to 
the Police Station to lay a complaint against 
me. . . .'' 

In the **Mofussil'' (country) '^stations'* a large 
tent takes the place of a theatre, a few boards, rest- 
ing upon trestles, doing duty as a stage, the make* 
shift footlights consisting of half a dozen villain- 
ons-smelling kerosene oil lamps with reflectors 
roughly fashioned from the lids of tin biscuit-boxes. 
Decrepit chairs of assorted shapes and sizes which 
are hired in the bazaar are provided for the 'Equal- 
ity,'' the dieaper seats consisting of benches; and 
the back of the tent is filled with patient natives who 
are content to stand. A number of slim blacks, 
squeezing themselves in under the flap, also form 
part of ttie audience; and if the proprietor of the 
company can prevail upon the ** collector,'' as the 
local magistrate is known, to honor the peif ormance 
with his immediate patronage, he will feel that he 
has not Uved in vain. As a rule, however, the 
Anglo-Indian official has little sympathy with Parsee 
theatrical enterprise ; the most pertinacious manager 
may sue till doomsday without realizing his heart's 
desire. Nor, as will be seen, is it altogether sur- 
prising that the Briton draws the line at this form 
of entertainment. 

The chief features of the Parsee drama are long 
speedies; an atmosphere of intense and unrelieved 



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462 THE PARSES DRAMA 

dnllness; scenery which has seen better days; cos- 
tumes in which cotton-velvet and tawdry spangles 
are prominent^ and scarcely any action or move- 
ment. Every line is recited in an irritating mono- 
tone; very little gesture is attempted; the make-up 
is primitive ; the wigs, beards and moustaches are of 
the most elementary description, and, for reasons 
which are not satisfactorily explained, the women's 
roles are played by Parsee men, or Hindoo boys, who, 
like the '^sopranists^' of a by-gone day, reproduce 
the female voice with a degree of success which is 
almost uncanny. The orchestra, consisting of three 
or four fiddle-Uke instruments, one or two flageolets, 
a species of banjo which is held between the knees 
and played like a cello, and a tom-tom, which is 
tapped with maddening persistence, is an important 
item in the entertainment. It contributes a long and 
tuneless overture; it accompanies the performers 
when they are speaking; and whenever they burst 
into song, the band plays its loudest. 

It should, by the way, be pointed out that the Par- 
see drama is a form of musical-comedy: — the sub- 
ject, which usually is taken from one of the countless 
fairy-tales of wMch Indian literature mainly con- 
sists, may be serious, even including foul murders by 
regicides, patricides, and fratricides, but the treat- 
ment is certain to be in musical-comedy vein. Nor, 
from the European point of view, do the actors know 
how to walk the stage ; standing stock still for many 
minutes at a time, they suggest so many pensive 
storks, and even when they have to make an exit, 
they disapx>ear in a series of shufSes — ^partly as the 
result of wearing sandals and baggy pantaloons, 
which, to quote an English-speaking actor of the sun- 
worshipping persuasion, are '^ voluminous about the 
knee. '* In short, judged by the standard prevailing 



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THE PARSEJS DRAMA 463 

in a civilized ooimtryy the whole thing is a travesty, 
though, if approadied in the prq[>er spirit, it affords 
an hour's entertainment to tiie globe-trotter who is 
out for information and a new ^q>erienoa 

Dancing also enters into the Parsee manager's 
scheme of things theatrical, the dancers consisting 
of nantdh girls. These dnsl^ exponents of their art, 
according to stay-at-home experts, who write Inrid 
'^penny bloods'' in which the naatch girl heroine is 
the incarnation of grace and loveliness, are nnsor- 
passed. As a matter of fact, the young woman 's re- 
puted good looks, being essentially of ibe native vari- 
ety, api>eal only to admirers of her own nationality, 
while the grace with which she is accredited is purely 
fictitious. As to the actual performance, though full 
of meaning to an Indian, it has an opposite effect 
upon the English spectator. Standing stock still for 
a few minutes, the colored baUerina composes her 
features till they become devoid of expression, next, 
cocking her eye at some obese patron, she indulges 
in a mild double-shuffle, and, after keeping it up with 
maddening persistence for about ten minutes, the 
same monotonous and singularly unmusical tune be- 
ing played all the time, she solemnly wriggles her 
way from the stage. Betuming to the particular 
board from which she set forth upon her uneventful 
journey, the arms are now brou^t into play; they 
rise and fall with little — ^if any — ^regard for rhythm, 
and the henna-tipped fingers are waggled in much 
the same manner as that adopted by a fond manmia 
when attempting to dispel the frowns of a fractious 
infant Sometimes an attempt at animation is in- 
troduced into the finale; but it is too much like the 
final effort of a dying gladiator to serve its purpose. 
The only redeeming feature about the nautoh girl's 
performance is her rather picturesque costume and 



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464 THE PABSEE DRAMA 

somewhat barbaric jewelry. A velvet zouave 
jacket, of vivid peacock-bine, emerald-green, or rose- 
pink, clothes the npper part of her person, which is 
nncorseted; an accordion-pleated sUrt, in which all 
the colors of the rainbow jostle each other, covers 
her lower extremities, and a gauzy Dacca shawl, irri- 
descent with dozens of green beetles' wings, is 
swayed about the shoulders. Boughly-set gems 
gleam in ^he ^^nautch wallah's" cocoa-nut oiled 
hair; her arms are covered with jangling bangles 
from the wrists to the elbow; one cannot see the 
fingers for the rings which cover them, and whether 
the ankle is slim or thick, its outline is hidden behind 
several heavy anklets. Sometimes Moti has the 
good luck to attract the notice of a millionaire rajah, 
who pays her a fat fee to dance for his special delec- 
tation; and if the bag of rui>ees is sufficiently heavy 
to warrant the extravagance, she invests in diamonds 
and emeralds of rare beauty, wearing them as rings. 
It may also be noticed that, with ttie usual short- 
sightedness of the native, she has them set in the 
cheapest and most incongruous way imaginable. 

From Indian fairy-tales to Shakespeare is a far 
cry; but the Parsee manager, firmly believing that 
Hamlet, Romeo and JuUet and The Merchant of 
Venice are well within the capabilities of his com- 
pany, includes these plays in the repertory. With 
the above exceptions, the pieces witii which he re- 
gales his particular public are not remarkable for 
the characteristics for which white dramatists are 
by way of being famed. Lacking a coherent plot, 
devoid of characterization and contrast, and written 
without the slightest idea of effect, no Western 
people can be expected to care for them, though they 
doubtless appeal to the Eastern mind. Nor is any 
attempt made to bolster up a poor piece by means of 



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THE PARSES DRAMA 465 

good scenery: even when a play is presented under 
tiie most favorable drcmnstanceSy the scenio aooes* 
sories leave nearly everything to be desired. Lime- 
light, too, is nsed so sparingly that its absence is 
scarcely missed; and as for ti^e simplest mechanical 
devices, they are hardly known. It thus can be 
imagined that a pageant-play, such as Henry VIII, 
or any other Shi^espearean production, calling for 
lavish dressing and staging, when given nnder Par- 
see auspices would indeed constitute a never-to-be- 
forgotten sight. Fortunately for those who are in- 
terested in the success of native theatrical enter- 
prise, the colored playgoer has practically no sense 
of humor and but Uttle sense of the fitness of things. 
The public, being easily persuaded that they have 
got their money's-worth, rarely harass the manage- 
ment with complaints. 

Although the Parsee business manager is not a 
believer in the virtues of extensive advertising, he 
sees to it that an insignificant advertisement is sent 
to the local papers, and that the hoardings are 
adorned with a few small posters calling attention 
to the attractions offered by his troupe. The bills 
are printed in the dialect spoken in the district; in 
Bombay, Parsee, Mahariti, and Ouzrati, are em- 
ployed ; Urdu applies to the upper part of India, and 
Tamil catches tiie southern reader's eye. Some- 
times, however, the advance-agent considers it ad- 
visable to launch out into English, particularly if the 
station is a cantonment one, and, consequently, 
crammed with British soldiers. Professing the best 
intentions in the world, he sets about his task, and, 
with the aid of a ''baboo'' (native clerk), who has 
probably taken a degree at an Indian university, 
composes a manifesto which is so remarkable that it 
gives every European in the place something to 



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466 THE PAR8EE DRAMA 

laugh over, besides, incidentally, helping to adver- 
tise the show. The subjoined examples, which re- 
cently decorated the Lucknow hoardings, are typical 
in their extravagance of language and phrase: — 

COME ALONG GENTLEMEN AND LADIES 

PLEASE BOOKING SEATS QUICKLY 

**The Faithful Prince Rewarded.*' Sublimest 
play of matchless costumes and glorious scenery 
wherein an all star cast must breaking all records 
for general excellence of ensemble. Marvellous 
tragic poses by prince gesture makers and costumes 
as worn in original * * Bagh- 'o-Bahar. ' ' All being new 
and up-to-date pattern. Nothing is old all being 
very expensive and bought from best European 
shops. Facile princeps and therefore equal to not 
any more in same line. This is the genuine thing 
and cannot be witnessed. 

BY ANY OTHER. *' 

**MR. SHAKESPEARE'S HAMLET. 

Engaged at great cost for only three nights and 
perhaps four the celebrated company from Bombay 
in great English writer's Royal family, &c All 
costumes being special and quite new. So is music 
and famous nautch girls of company. 

NO SMOKING. 

All gentlemen native of European must not smoke 
for fear of dangers." 

The free list is almost unknown. In Calcutta, 
Bombay, Madras, and the large stations, the local 
oritics and correspondents, though not as cordially 



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THE PARSEE DRAMA 467 

welcomed as they may desire, have little diflSculty in 
secnring tickets. But the London system of inviting 
Dicky Tom and Harry and their wives and families 
to be present at a first night, merely because they 
are connected remotely, or otherwise, with the theat- 
rical business, does not find favor; indeed, man- 
agers and members of rival companies, playwrights 
and others do not even seek admittance. Conse- 
quently, with the exception of the accredited scribes, 
every ticket-holder has paid for the privilege of wit- 
nessing the dramatized fairy tale which forms the 
evening's entertainment — ^a condition calculated to 
turn European managers green with envy. 

Hide-bound conservatism — ^that is the policy of the 
Parsee manager. New plays, adaptations of Eng- 
lish and Continental successes and translations do 
not appeal to him, and he is impervious to the sup- 
posed fascinations of social, moral, and religious 
problems. For many decades his predecessors have 
occupied themselves with the sort of thing which 
holds the Indian stage today, and he contends that 
what met with his great-great-grandfather's ap- 
proval is good enough for him. Innovations, in fact, 
are not welcomed in the ** unchanging East"; 
'*dustoor" (custom) is the god to whom he cheer- 
fully bends his knee. Oeobgb Cecil. 



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THE EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOE 






'1 F a child is told some very welcome 
■^ piece of news or afforded a great or 
unexpected pleasure, his joyful emotions 
often refuse to be suppressed. He can- 
not resist the temptation to ''dance for 
joy ; '* he may even turn a clumsy somer- 
sault. Thus he gives his emotions physi- 
cal expression, translates them freely in terms of 
lively movement. That — ^the representation of feel- 
ing by physical action, the expression of inner being 
by outward seeming — ^is acting in its lowest and sim- 
plest form. And from some such tendency, perhaps, 
the art of acting sprang into being in the childhood 
of all peoples. The earliest phase in the convention- 
alization of the means for expressing such spon- 
taneous, primal emotions, is the dance. The first 
actor therefore was, more properly speaking, a 
dancer. At the beginning, the emotions that found 
vent in his dancing were his own simple ones; but 
later, as his ability as a medium of expression grew 
and gradually begot greater appreciation, he was 
called upon to reproduce, by the same means, the 
emotions of other and imaginary persons. 

Such, at any rate, was the origin of the acting art 
in Greece. The drama of the Greeks, evolving as it 
did from the choral dances in honor of Dionysus, 
demanded of its first interpreters that they be 
dancers only. Almost simultaneously, it is true, 

468 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 469 

singing also was required of them; but dancing was 
the fundamental requisite. And, as has been lately 
mnphasizedy Attic theatrical art not only originated 
in orchesis, but was in all its principles, even 
throughout the days of its greatest development, 
based upon the dance: for every movement and ges- 
ture of the actor was influenced by its rhythoL 

As the festival dancing about the altar of Dio- 
nysus became less a mere improvisation and stiffened 
into conventional forms, the dancers grew from en- 
thusiastic novices into practiced performers. And, 
80 soon as special qualifications and training were 
demanded, chorus dancing became a profession. 
To-day, when a particularly capable chorus girl out- 
shines the rest, she is given a line or two to speak 
or a solo dance; just so, by his superiority, some 
Oreek dancer differentiated himself from his fellows 
and was honored by being allowed to act as leader, 
and in that capacity to recite, unaccompanied by the 
rest. Soon he ceased to be no more than a reader of 
the lines assigned him, began to claim as his own 
the experiences he recounted, and after a while was 
given opportunity actually to impersonate legendary 
heroes. Next, with the use of the masks which 
Thespis, a **dancer*' (as the poets themselves were 
then called), is said to have introduced in the sixth 
century B. C, this one interpreter was enabled to 
enact in turn the parts of several persons. At this 
point the profession of the actor, as distinct from 
that of the chorus dancer, began. 

To jEschylus is attributed the introduction of a 
second actor, and Sophocles soon made it possible to 
have three speaking characters on the scene at once. 
This number, it is generally believed, was never 
thereafter increased in tragedy. In comedy, too, 
Cratinus is credited with having set a limit of three 



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470 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

upon the number of impersonators. When the action 
of the play demanded the presence simnltaneously 
of more than three important persons, only three of 
these were given lines to speak; the remaining char- 
acters stood about in silence. 

Thus the performers in a Greek play were divided 
into three classes : there were the chorus men, actors, 
and silent impersonators or mutes. In none of these 
classes were women included; female parts were 
always taken by men. 

The duties of the members of the chorus were 
somewhat similar in kind to those of a modem chorus 
in comic opera, though a much greater degree of 
perfection in all the branches of their art was de- 
manded of them. They sang, and, occasionally, re- 
cited, always accompanying their words with a form 
of dance which consisted of fluid, rhythmic move- 
ments calling the whole body into play and eloquently 
expressing the emotions their own words, or those 
of the actor, described. As the number of actors 
increased and greater prominence was given to their 
part in the play, the importance of the chorus was 
appreciably lessened, until, in the New Comedy, it 
seems to have disappeared entirely. 

Of the actors, as distinct from the chorus men and 
mutes, there were also three classes. The most im- 
portant of the three actors in a play was the pro- 
tagonist; the other two were spoken of as the deu- 
teragonist and the tritagonist and were hardly more 
than his assistants. The protagonist was the fea- 
tured actor of a production — ^the star. To him were 
always allotted the ** fattest** parts; he seems also 
to have been assigned a great number of female 
roles. Dramatic poets made their plays to fit him, 
just as dramatists have always buUt plays around 
great actors and with their personalities and accom- 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 471 

pfiahments in mind. And when the plays were pro- 
duced he was made the pivot of the whole perform- 
anoe. No star of to-day is given greater prominence, 
and probably none is more arrogant than some of 
the Greek protagonists grew to be. The other two 
actors were instmcted to subordinate themselves to 
him entirely and to do nothing that might distract 
attention from their colleague or excite the appro- 
bation of the crowd in their behalf; he often saw 
to it himself that no opportunity was given them 
to do so. Since so large a share in the performance 
was granted him, he was proportionally respon- 
sible for the success of the play. The poet's reputa- 
tion was often in his hands. Hence the best pro- 
tagonists were, like the stars of our own day, in 
great demand. Great honor was accorded them. 
Their victories in the dramatic contests were re- 
corded on commemorative tablets, and they were 
made the pets of monarchs. 

Considerable, however, was exacted of the deu- 
teragonist; his duties were important and he had of 
necessity to be capable. The tritagonist, on the 
other hand, was called upon only when his partici- 
pation was absolutely indispensable. Every part 
that could possibly be taken by the protagonist was 
given him; in fact, on many occasions he took great 
trouble to change masks rather than entrust either 
of the other two with lines that seemed to require 
special ability. The mutes, though essential, were 
nnimporatnt. 

Of the Greek actor a great deal was required. 
First of all, of course, it was highly important that 
he be a man impressive in appearance and, in his 
movements, graceful and stately. The nature of the 
drama he interpreted demanded that he combine the 
talents of the singer and the dancer with those of 



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472 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

the actor, and that he have the training and thor- 
ough education of each. Some of the more emotional 
passages in his parts called for a musical rendition; 
and the qualifications of the dancer were always 
called into play by his posturings, his sensuous move- 
mentSy and Ms smooth and facile gestures. And 
along with this threefold demand upon him came 
several handicaps. The stately, flowing draperies 
and the high and awkward boots that custom and 
theatrical conditions required the tragic actor to 
wear, though they gave him an appearance of sculp- 
tural beauty and imposing stature, prohibited quick 
or elaborate motion. Therefore he had to make the 
quiet, simple movements to which they limited him 
so much the more rhythmic and impressive, his poses 
and gestures so much the more plastic and expressive. 
Circumstances also made it imperative that he wear a 
tall, cumbersome mask covering his face and head. 
Though the vastness of the Greek open-air theatres 
would have made impotent the finer shades of facial 
expression, the mask prevented — ^was, in fact, a sub- 
stitute for — even the most obvious. The actor could 
not, as can the actor of to-day, stand quietly about 
and, by delicate facial play, reveal his ttioughts and 
emotions or show the effects the words of other char- 
acters made upon him. When his voice was silent 
his sole means of making his feelings evident lay in 
movements of his body and limbs ; therefore, for him 
the art of "listening^* was an extremely difficult one. 
For the sacrifice of facial expression he had to com- 
pensate with suggestive gesticulation, and by a flexi- 
bility of voice that afforded a great variety of deli- 
cate inflections, tones and qualities. It was only by 
the most assiduous and protracted training upon his 
part that his voice acquired this flexibility and at the 
same time the emotional power that the plays of the 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 473 

Ore^ poets called for. Upon his voice, above every- 
thing else, his success depended; and, as Demos- 
thenes hinted, it was by his voice that he was jndged. 
It must, indeed, have been a distinct and incisive as 
well as a strong voice that could make all the nuances 
of expression carry throughout an audience of 
twenty thousand or so. But it was not only obstacles 
presented by the physical conditions of the theatre 
that the voice had to overcome; the many beauties 
of the language he declaimed made necessary per- 
fect enimciation, precise changes of pitch, impres- 
sive pauses and accurate placing of accents. Not 
only did his native tongue entail such meticulous 
attention to details that are so often ignored to-day, 
but his highly cultured audience would endure noth- 
ing short of perfection in this matter of articulation 
and accentuation. So, to meet all these require- 
ments, the actor must have a trained intellect and 
absolute control of a vocal apparatus that, in itself, 
was an exceptional instrument. Persevering prac- 
tice and contiQuously perfect condition were indis- 
pensable: like the modem athlete, the Greek actor 
had to be always **in training.^' 

By the time the Greek drama had developed to the 
point where one actor was used, it had lost much of 
the spontaneity that marked the first phase of its 
evolution and had become a conventional and formal 
art Thus early the young actor found himself 
forced to follow traditional methods in his acting. 
In the period in which ^Bschylus produced his plays 
the actor's art consisted of simple, unrealistic decla- 
mation, accompanied by slow and dignified action; 
a dramatic representation of the complexity of 
every-day life was not considered necessary, for the 
reason that the people depicted by the poets were 
not the kind of men to be met with every day upon 



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474 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

the streets. Bnt this conventional style, becoming 
irksome to the growing artist, was gradually dis- 
carded. The actor began inevitably to go to nature 
for his models, strove to use the actualities of the 
life he saw about him as the touchstone of his art. 
Kallipedes and Nicostratus — the latter of whom pos- 
sessed a style which his contemporaries considered 
perfect — ^were pioneers in the field of naturalistic 
acting and led the way in this departure from the 
methods of the past. By their unprecedented disre- 
gard for the * * best traditions ' ^ of the jEschylean * * old 
school,'* they caused great consternation in the 
ranks of the latter and brought about a revolution 
in acting methods. The period of natural acting 
which the efforts of these men inaugurated gave 
Greece her greatest actors — such men as Polus, 
Theodorus, Aristodemus, and Neoptolemus. It was 
Polus who, when his role required that he weep over 
an urn of human ashes, brought upon the scene — so 
Belasco-like was his zeal in the search for realistic 
touches — a vessel containing the ashes of his own 
dead son; over these he wept with great sincerity 
and effectiveness. He was in many respects the best 
actor of his time. Theodorus, however, had acquired 
great ability in expressing strong emotions in a 
natural manner. By his wonderful powers of play- 
ing upon the feelings of his auditors he is said to 
have moved to tears the tyrannical Alexander of 
Thera, who, rather than be seen weakly weeping at 
the simulated sufferings of Theodorus, when he had 
many times looked without emotion upon the pain 
his own cruelties had caused, fled from the theatre. 
These great figures in Greek dramatic history 
were all tragedians. Of the comic actors less is 
known. They were probably more fortunate than 
the players of tragedy, in having to contend against 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 475 

fewer of the difficulties arising from the strictures 
of theatrical convention. But they appear, so far as 
is ascertainable, never to have succeeded in reaching 
so high a plain of artistic achievement 

To so great a degree did the players of the period 
of natural acting develop their art that the contem- 
porary dramatist was relegated to a place of sec- 
ondary importance. The output of the poets seems 
to have declined in quality as the actor grew in skill, 
until, in the latter days of Greece, the actor had to 
resort for dramatic material to the great plays of 
former poets. The staging of these old masterpieces 
was put into the hands of the protagonist, who thus 
became an actor-manager, as the first poets had been 
before him. With no new dramatists detracting 
from the attention accorded him, the actor's skill be- 
came the object of chief interest. He directed all his 
efforts toward the perfection of the art of acting. 
As a result his powers grew over-ripe and went to 
seed. Finally naturalism and virtuosity degener- 
ated into mere mechanical cleverness, and trick imi- 
tations of the sounds of nature were substituted for 
the portrayal of character and emotion. 

Through the four phases discernible in the devel- 
opment of the histrionic art in Oreece, the art of 
acting seems continually to revolve. Simple, unas- 
suming recitation grows into conventional declama- 
tion; conventionality succumbs to the demands of 
nature; naturalism descends to tricks. 

As far as the actor's standing in the community is 
concerned it could hardly have been better. He was 
looked upon with the veneration due a priest and the 
admiration accorded a great and cultured artist. 
Many honors and special privileges were bestowed 
upon him, and the remuneration he received for his 
labors was ample. 



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476 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

The Boman drama, being, as it was, a backwash of 
the Greek, added little to the art of acting and de- 
tracted infinitely from the esteem in which the actor 
himself was held. In Italy tragedy lost a great deal 
of its dignity, while comedy gained wide popularity; 
hence the greatest chance was given the comedian to 
develop. 

The Romans built their theatres, with seats for 
their senators filling the orchestra which Greek cus- 
tom had reserved for the chorus ; so the chorus was 
eliminated. Dancing, therefore, ceased to be a fun- 
damental of the actor's art. Singing also was prac- 
tically dropped, though for a time the Boman pro- 
ducers made a pretense of retaining it. But the 
actor, or histrio as he was called, was not, tmtil the 
time of Terence at any rate, handicapped by being 
made to wear the mask, and never wore the Greek 
tragic boot; thus he was permitted greater freedom. 
As a result of these less artificial conditions, one 
phase of Greek acting was carried to a more ad- 
vanced stage of development : gesture was made an 
end in itself and finally established as the indepen- 
dent art of pantomime, which, in the days of Bome's 
decline, almost crowded out all other dramatic forms. 
This branch of acting was, before it degenerated, a 
distinct addition and numbered among its perform- 
ers such famous pantomimes as Bathyllus and 
Pylades. 

The Bomans did not limit themselves to three 
actors as the Greeks had done, but made use of as 
many as the number of characters in the play called 
for. Besides the actors of tragedy and comedy and 
the new type of performers that the art of panto- 
mime produced, there was a fourth class, the actors 
of the Mimes. Women were included among the 
participants in these compact little comedies in verse 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 477 

and had considerable effect upon their character. 
With the plays of Terence women were introduced 
into the regular drama also. 

When the Greek drama was imported into Italy, 
Livius Andronicus, who is credited with having 
made the first Latin adaptations, had to resort for 
performers to freedmen and slaves. So, from the 
start the members of the acting profession were not 
looked upon with favor. The actor, in fact, was an 
object of contempt to his countrymen, and his lot was 
a sorry one. Any citizen of Rome who took up act- 
ing as a profession forfeited thereby all his civic 
rights ; if a soldier became an actor he paid for his 
choice with his life. The histrion was considered 
a worthless person and often even classed with 
thieves, deserters, panders and similarly undesirable 
characters. Nevertheless, when eventually the 
drama came to be one of the principal sources of 
amusement for the populace, his presence was looked 
upon as indispensable. But socially he was an out- 
cast. In the matter of his more inomediate connec- 
tion with play presentation he was no less unfortu- 
nate. An error in the performance of his part upon 
the stage earned him a flogging from his manager, 
as well as very bad treatment at the hands of an 
audience even freer in its expressions of disapproval 
than the audiences in Greece. 

Of men so badly treated much in the way of artistic 
accomplishment could not be expected. A few 
actors, however, overcame all these handicaps. 
Boscius, for instance, Bome's greatest comedian, re- 
ceived from Sulla the high honor of being raised 
from the low rank of the ordinary actor and made a 
senator. For him acting was also financially profit- 
able. On occasions he is said to have received for a 
single performance about $150; and, while in his 



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478 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

best years, he was accorded an annuity of some- 
thing like $22,000. 

He and his contemporary, ^sopus, a tragedian, 
represent the best that Soman actors achievecL By 
the time Boscins began to attain prominence, acting 
had reached its bombastic, exaggerated stage; but 
he did much to moderate the excesses whidi were 
part of the methods of his predecessors. And by 
his eminence and good character he was of material 
aid to the actor in general, since he raised the stand- 
ards of the profession and inspired respect for it. 

With the end of the theatres in Rome, the art of 
acting died. Attempts were made to revive it, bnt 
they were without success. It had to be reborn. 
And it was not until the early middle ages that the 
process of germination began. 

Abthxtb Pollook. 



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FRANK WEDEKIND. 

N MY first meeting with Frank Wede- 
kind, my disappointment was great. I 
had read and studied all of his works : 
plays, short stories and poems; and, as 
one is foolishly apt to do, I had let the 
various elements that I f oimd in them 
translate themselves, as it were, into an 
imaginary portrait of the author who had conceived 
them. Well fixed in my mind's eye, I could see 
Wedekind as a long, gaimt figure, with a robustly 
constructed head and sad features, with keen but 
strangely tormented eyes hidden deep in their sock- 
ets, with sensitive, restless hands. 

Thus I was picturing him as I waited in the draw- 
ing-room of his Munich apartment, — a large, square 
room permeated with an atmosphere of extraordi- 
nary severity. There were a few pieces of heavy 
antique furniture propped up against the walls. A 
dark oil-painting of the old Italian school covered 
the main part of one side and radiated such gloom 
that even the bright June sun that bathed the stately 
Prinz Begenten Strasse outside did not dare enter 
the wide open window. 

A serious humorist or a deliberate mystifierf A 
moralist or — ^the other thing f Diogenes or Cag^i- 
ostrot What was het Ever since Wedekind first 
began to write, critics had showered him with these 
labels, and more. What would I find him to be, 
judging not merely by his works but by his ap- 

479 



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u 






480 FRANK WEDEKIND 

pearance and his conversation f Unusual, for a cer- 
tainty, and possibly a little of all that had been said 
of this very interesting German. 
I At last, the Master appeared and silently ushered 

^. me into his workshop— a little man with square 

shoulders and a round head, small, short-sighted 
eyes and thick lips over which, at the time, he was 
cultivating a sharply outlined, tiny moustache 
d VAmericaine. There was an almost obtrusive air 
of outward impeccability about him. And taking 
the visible as an indication and a mirror of the 
invisible, how different I found him from what, in 
my estimation, should have been the author of those 
original, daring, revolutionary works of literature 
that had aroused so much contradictory comment all 
through Germany! 

When he finally condescended to speak, the words 
rolled out with amazing rapidity, as if they had 
been tied up too long. There was nothing brilliant 
about his conversation, but it was full of passion and 
defiance. Until I assured him that I had no inten- 
tion to fight with him, he talked at me, not to me, — 
chiefly about the Spiesshiirger who were vilipending 
him, about his plays and about the players who 
seemed to have pledged themselves to betray the 
author's meaning. 

A strange creature, Frank Wedekind, and stranger 
even by reason of the contrast between the man and 
his works. Elements that appear irreconcilable are 
thrown together in him — ^not peacefully united, but 
at war with each other. This bourgeais'looking lit- 
tle person with a tendency toward fleshiness is a 
playwright by calling, a novelist and a poet in his 
leisure hours; but by profession he is an actor — a 
bad actor, at that, and, whatever he may say of his 
confreres, one who invariably spoils his own plays 



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FRANK WEDEKIND 481 

when he asBtimeB a role in them. He has been told 
80 emphatically in every German town he has visited, 
and by this time he ^onld know. But he insists, 
and again and again takes his plays on Owtapid' 
reisen, with himself and his little wife, Tilly Newes, 
as principal protagonists. The fact that the two of 
them do not succeed in killing the public's interest 
in the plays speaks very highly indeed for the merits 
of the plays. 

Among the numerous dramatic pieces that he has 
given to the public, either on the stage or in book 
form, or both, Erdgeist {The Spirit of Earth) has 
been considered the most important. Curiously 
enough, on this one point the author himself seems 
to agree with the general view. He would not be 
Wedekind, if he did not find something to object to 
and get excited about. 

''My Lulu in Erdgeist is an ingenue, an ingenue !'' 
he thundered, and thumped the table with his fist. 
''An ingenue! And she should be played as such I 
My wife plays her exactly as I intended her. Those 
who play her as a bad woman either don't imder- 
stand or wilfully pervert her I" 

Had he forgotten that the kisses of boimdless 
gratitude which he showered on Glertrud Eysolt's 
hands at the time of the first performance of the 
drama imder Max Beinhardt's management had 
been recorded? And Eysolt had made Lulu a bad 
woman, if ever there was one I The conclusion be- 
came obvious — ^that Wedekind had composed the 
type of Lulu, and the whole Erdgeist for that mat- 
ter, imder the spell of inspiration, without knowing 
exactly what he was about, and that only later, when 
he fell desperately in love with and married the 
little ingenue actress, Tilly Newes, he decided 
that his Lulu should be and always was intended 



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482 FRANK WEDEKIND 

to be the type she had to become in Tilly's hands. 
Dramatically^ Erdgeist is the soundest thing 
Wedekind has written, the best adapted for stage 
purposes, and, besides, it really does contain a trace 
of inspiration. The motto he chose for it holds a 
sort of program — a promise and a threat. These 
are the first and last lines of the quotation : 

'^ Nature created me of coarser stuff, 

**And toward Earth will draw me my desire. . . . 

''And in her service not one human lives 
**Who, from it, could withdraw a spotless souL** 

Lulu is earth-made, unconsciously devoted to all 
things earthly — ^not necessarily material, but earthly. 
She personifies the Spirit of Earth. A pessimist 
and gynoclast would call her "the Eternal Femi- 
nine. '* 

She is a young creature who, at the age of twelve, 
was foimd by Schon selling flowers in the cafes 
around midnight, — and caught by him trying to steal 
his watch. He takes pity on her because he finds in 
her personality somethhig startling and original, 
provides her with an education and marries her off 
to a wealthy old physician who, naturally, is ob- 
sessed with jealousy. When the play begins, she 
is the old doctor's wife and poses in Pierrot costume 
to the painter Schwartz for her portrait. The young 
artist is half crazed by her witchery, and there is a 
very peculiar love-scene, photographically precise, 
as it needs must happen between two people just 
such as these. The husband comes, finds the studio 
upset and, in a frantic fit, receives a deadly stroke of 
apoplexy. There f oUows a scene typical of Wede- 
kind: 



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FRANK WEDEKIND 483 

ScHWABTZ. [Bending over the body.] Doctor ! — 
Mr.OoU! 

LuiiXr. I think it is rather serious. 

SoHWABiz. Do talk decently! 

LuiiU. He would not speak to me like that! He 
always makes me dance for him when he is not f eel- 
ingwelL 

SoHWABTz. The doctor must be here in a mo- 
ment. 

LxTiiXj. Medicine never helps him. 

SoHWABTZ. But in such a case one must try every- 
thing! 

LxTLu. He does not believe in it. 

ScHWABTZ. Won^ you at least go and dress f 

LuiiXj. Yes 

ScHWABTZ. What are you waiting fort 

LuLTJ. I beg of you 

SoHWABTZ. Whatt 

LtJLiT. Close his eyes. 

SoHWABTZ. You are horrible 1 

Lulu. Not nearly as horrible as you 1 

Schwartz. As If 

LuiiU. You have the nature of a criminaL 

SoHWABTz. Does not the tragedy of this moment 
move you at all? 

LuiiU. It will come to me also, some time. 

Schwartz. Please, be still! 

LuiiU. It will come to you also, some time. 

Schwartz. You neednH remind me of that now! 

LuiiU. Pleas e 

Schwartz. Do what you think should be done. I 
know nothing about it. 

LuiiU. He looks at me 

Schwartz. At me also! 

Lulu. You are a coward! 



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484 FRANK WEDEKIND 

ScHWABTZ. [Closing the eyes of the dead manJ] 
It is the first time in my life that I have been con- 
demned to this. 

LuiiU. Haven't yon done it for your mother f 

ScHWABTz. [Nervously.] No. 

Lulu. Then, I suppose, you were absent 

ScHWABTZ. No! 

Lulu. Or were yon afraid f 

ScHWABTZ. [Violently.] NO II 

Lulu. [Shuddering.] I didn't mean to offend 
yon 

SoHWABTZ. She is still living I 

Lulu. Then yon have someone in the world? 

ScHWABTz. She is a beggar. 

Lulu. I know what that means I 

ScHWABTZ. Keep yonr mockeries I 

Lulu. Now I am rich 

SoHWABTZ. [Turning from her.] It is horrible I 
Bnt is she responsible? 

Lulu. [T,o herself.] What will become of 
me ? 

ScHWABTZ. [As above.] Absolutely without con- 
science! [He goes to her and takes her hand.] 
Look into my eyes. 

Lulu. [Frightened.] What do you want of me? 

ScHWABTZ. Look into my eyes! 

Lulu. I see myself as a Pierrot in them. 

SoHWABTZ. [Repelling her.] Curse the mum- 
mery! 

Lulu. I must get dressed now. 

SoHWABTZ. [Holding her.] One question. 

Lulu. But you don't want me to answer! 

ScHWABTZ. Can you speak the truth? 

Lulu. I don't know 

SoHWABTZ. Do you believe in (Jod? 

Lulu. I don't know 



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FRAVK WEDEKIND 485 

SoHWABTZ. Is there anything by which you can 
swearf 

LxTiiU. I don't know. Let me go. You are crazy. 

SoHWABTZ. What do you believe int 

LuiiU. I don't know 

SoHWABiz. Have yon no sonl 1 

huiAj. I don't know 

SoHWABTz. Have you ever loved t 

Lulu. I don't know 

SoHWABTz. She doesn't know I 

LuiiU. [Motionless.] I don't know 

SoHWABTz. [With a look at the hodtf.] He 
knows! 

LuiiU. What do you want to know? 

ScHWABTZ. [At the end of his tvits.] Gto and get 
dressed! 

[Lulu goes into the adjoining room.] 

SoHWABTz. [Bending over the body.] I wish I 
could change places with you who are lying here, 
dead. — ^I give her back to you ! I give you my youth 
into the bargain! I have not the courage, not the 
faith! My poverty, my patient waiting have ex- 
hausted them. It is too late for me now. I am not 
equal to happiness. It frightens me! . . . 
Wake! I have not touched her! . . . He opens 
Ms mouth. . . . Mouth open and eyes closed, 
like a child. . . . With me it is tlie other way! 
. • . Wake! Oh, wake! • . . [He kneels to 
tie a handkerchief around the dead man's head.] 
Here I pray to Heaven for the strength to be happy 1 
For the power and the freedom to be happy, just a 
little ! For her sake ! Only for her sake I 

[LtUu returns, completely dressed. She has her 
left arm raised and with her right hand holds her 
bodice together under it.] 



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486 FRANK WEDEKIND 

LxTiiTT. Would you mind hooking me up heref 
My hand trembles. 

In the second act Lnln is married to the painter 
who, thanks to her money and to Schon's influence, 
has become snccessfnl and fashionable. But all 
through these two matrimonial adventures she really 
loves none but her benefactor, Schon, who is a wid- 
ower with a grown-up son, and engaged to be mar- 
ried to a young society woman. He finds her devo- 
tion to him, and her persistent attempts to continue 
her former liaison with him, imcomfortable and 
compromising. He warns the painter to keep closer 
watch over his wife and tells Um what he knows of 
Lulu's mysterious antecedents. The sudden shock 
of the revelation is too much for the young hus- 
band's emotional nature. He goes off and cuts his 
throat with a razor. 

SoHON. [To his son Alva.] The fool! 
Alva. I suppose that somehow he has been en- 
lightened about her. 
Schon. He brooded too much over himself. 

[Schon is about to answer the doorbell.] 

LuiiU. [Stopping him.] Wait I There is some 
blood there. 

ScHOK. Where? 

[She soaks her handkerchief in perfume to wipe 
Schon's hand.] 

LuiiU. Wait m clean it away. 

SoHOK. It is your husband's blood! 

LxTiiU. It leaves no stains. 

SoHOK. Monster I 

Lulu. You'll marry me nevertheless! 

The third act finds Lulu dancing in a ballet com- 
posed by young Alva. A prince courts her and offers 



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FRANK WEDEKIND 487 

to take her away. But her cap is set for Schon. She 
finally succeeds in forcing him to break his engage- 
ment to the other woman and to marry her. 

In the fourth act she has at last reached her aim. 
She is Schon's wife^ a position which does not pre- 
vent her from listening to a strangely mixed crowd 
of admirers. As he breaks in on one of her parties, 
he finds a man hidden in every comer, behind every 
curtain, and a woman, too, who pursues Lulu with a 
doglike devotion. He thrusts a revolver into her 
hand with the suggestion that suicide has become 
urgent for her. 

LuLir. You want to force me to send a bullet 
through my heart f I am no longer sixteen, but I 
am still too young for thatt 

Hearing this, a schoolboy, hidden under the table, 
leaps forth and yells for help. As Schon turns 
toward him. Lulu fires five shots into his back and 
keeps on pidling the trigger, hysterically. With his 
last breath Schon denoimces her to his son Alva. 
The boy has had a hard fight with himself to resist 
her fascination until then. Now she pleads : 

LxTiiU. You cannot deliver me into the hands of 
justice! It would cost me my head! I shot him 
because he wanted to shoot me! In all the world I 
never loved any man but him! — ^Alva! Demand of 
me what you wish ! Don't let me fall into the hands 
of justice! It would be a pity about me. • . • 
I am still young! I shall be true to you all my life! 
I shall belong to none but you! Look at me, Alva! 
Man! Look at me! Look at me! 

But the police burst in and Lulu is arrested. 

The horror of the war of sex in Erdgeist is mild 
compared with what emanates from the second part 
of the tragedy, The Box of Pandora^ in which Lulu, 
escaped from prison, again takes the dominant part 



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S4 4j 



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488 FRANK WEDEKIND 

It ^8 the first and by far the boldest of ^^ white slave 
plays.'' The degradation through which Lulu is 
forced after she falls into the hands of a '^ white 
slaver,'' until finally she joins the ghosts of those 
who were lost through her, is too awful and too 
complicated to be related briefly. 

Here Wedekind reveals himself what someone has 
called a '^ monomaniac of morality." As his per- 
plexing temperament is wont to prompt him, he hides 
his motives and intentions under the mask of cari- 
cature, of bizarre and grotesque form. Frequently 
the hoof of Mephistopheles can be detected, but there 
is never a touch of frivolity. In fact, the deadly 
seriousness with which he handles all his subjects, 
even when he caricatures them, is at once the saving 
feature in his work and its weak point. A greater 
aloofness on the author's part would often make his 
sermon more convincing. On the other hand, a 
lighter dealing with Wedekind 's terrible or delicate 
themes might have rendered them entirely imfit for 
publication. And while the reader is grateful to 
Wedekind for his scorn to play with suggestions and 
double meanings, yet he is disconcerted at his bold 
disrobing of the beast in all its brutal reality. 
Though one may object to his thinking his thoughts 
out to their uttermost limit, one must admit that 
he does it with bigness and earnestness. That is 
why it is needless to fear, after all, that his work 
may have a pernicious effect. 

Wedekind has been relentlessly attacked by the 
authorities as well as by the public. In one of his 
shorter plays, Zensur, he presents his own defense, 
putting it into the mouth of a misunderstood litterat: 
**What I utter with the deep earnestness of my con- 
viction is being taken for blasphemy. Should that 
make me put myself in contradiction with my con- 



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FRANK WEDEKIND 489 

viction t Should I consciotisly become untmey nnreal 
and insincere, to make people believe in my sincerity? 
If I were capable of doing that, then would I be the 
blasphemer for which I am taken." 

Here is another one of his professions de foi: 

"Prom the days of my early childhood I have en- 
deavored to conciliate the awe with which beantifnl 
nature inspires us with the awe which is forced upon 
us by the eternal laws of the universe. We derive 
no pleasure from the beauty of those laws. We have 
no respect for the laws of earthly beauty. The 
reimion of holiness and beauty, to form a divine idol 
for pious worship, that is the aim toward which I 
have striven since childhood.*' 

And stUl another: 

''Religion is a matter of feeling rather than of 
reasoning only to those who cannot exhaust their 
own thoughts.** 

The Awakening of Spring is one of Wedekind*s 
earlier plays. With Erdgeisty it is the most widely 
known, — ^the only one produced in Paris and the first 
translated into English. If the perfect play is the 
one that abides by the three unities of the Greek 
drama, then The Awakening of Spring must be called 
dramatically bad, written as it is in nineteen short 
scenes and extending over a period of several 
months. In Berlin, the ingenious device of Max 
Beinhardt*s revolving stage made its integral pres- 
entation possible within the time-limit of an ordi- 
nary performance. In the Paris production, a few 
of the less important scenes had to be dispensed 
with. Yet, the general effect of the play was start- 
ling, generating discussion among the public and 
thereby contriving an honorable success. 

Wedekind calls it a * 'tragedy of childhood.** The 
play really deals with just one side of that great, 



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490 FRANK WEDEKIND 

mysterioBS tragedy, the remembrance of whidi still 
thrills some of us when its actual pangs are long 
past The awakening of spring is the beginning ci 
the sex-instinct in young boys and girls, — ^that fleet- 
ing moment that could be so beautiful and generally 
is so ugly. With a quiet, pitiless finger Wedekind 
points out the evils and sorrows that spring from 
the unfortunate custom of surroimding idl the facts 
about the reproduction of the race with Puritanic 
silence,— of keeping children as long as possible in 
^'blessed innocence.** '^ Damnable ignorance,'* he 
says. 

A little girl of fourteen, Wendla, is seduced by a 

boy of sixteen, without either of them knowing what 

they are about Wendla *s married sister recently 

had a baby. She knew that a certain Mother Schmidt 

ll attended her sister, and she could no longer believe 

)^, in her mother's miraculous tales about the stoi^ 

I [J But that was alL The questions she asked her 

I mother received no definite answer. Custom has 

made it difficult for mothers to speak to their 

daughters about the most sacred of htmian things. 

So, after she has played in the hay with young 

Melchior, and she falls ill^ she thinks it must be 

anaemia that ails her. But the mother knows and 

weeps and asks her why she didn't tell her that she 

was going to have a child. Wendla says : 

''But how can I have a childf I'm not married! 

1 You told me that one must have a husband and love 

him very, very much to have a child. I have never 
loved anyone but you, mother!" 
' And when the bell rings, and the woman opens the 

door and says: ''You are right on time. Mother 
Schmidt!" it is one of the most humanly tragic 
moments that can be f oimd in any literature. 
Little Wendla dies, and Melchior is interned in a 



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FRANK WEDEKIND 491 

children's penitentiary. His friend, Maurice, has 
made a bad record in his studies and will have to 
repeat his course, for his flesh and his mind have 
been disquieted of late. In his head he turns and 
measures all his youthful philosophy, — ^transcribed 
with remarkable verity by Wedekind, — and then 
decides that life is not worth the effort and suicide 
is the shortest and most desirable solution to an 
intricate problem. One thing makes him hesitate 
for a moment: 

''It is a little humiliating to have been a man and 
not to have known the most human of things. You 
have been in Egypt, sir, and you have not seen the 
Pyramids^ 

The last scene is laid in the cemetery where Mau- 
rice is buried. Melchior has escaped from the peni- 
tentiary, and his reverie brings him to his friend's 
grave. The hour is midnight. The dead boy arises 
— a body dad in a wide, dark cloak, carrying his 
head in the hollow of his arm, — ^and speaks to the 
living one. They engage in an uncanny, philosoph- 
ical conversation which contains the moral and the 
condusion to be drawn from the drama. A ' ' Masked 
Gentleman" appears, symbolizing ordinary, every- 
day life, and joins in the discussion. The dead boy 
is content, for he has the soothing assurance that 
everything is naught to him now. The living one 
follows the ''Masked Gentleman'' back into life, and 
with him he takes ' ' an everlasting doubt about every- 
thing." 

For the Awakening of Spring Wedekind 's ad- 
mirers have hailed him the forerunner of a new 
dramatic art, a neo-romanticism. His foes have 
flayed him as a literary clown and a pomographer. 
To the independent critic he can appear as neither 
of these, entirely. He is not big enough to be a 



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492 FRANK WEDEKIND 

prophety and as yet no one has come, with greater 
talent than his own, who has found Wedekind's 
direction worth the following. He stands alone, 
rather as a literary accident than as a promise. His 
choice falls preferably upon sex-themes, it is true, 
but there is nothing unclean in his treatment of them* 
He impresses one rather as a sad and sensuous 
moralist. *^The flesh has a spirit of its own,*' he 
declares. 

In ahnost every case, his meaning is worth in- 
finitely more than his form. As a dramatic crafts- 
man he is inferior to scores of others. The greater 
number of his plays would not allow the most super- 
ficial technical analysis or stand the glare of the 
footlights. The characters he has created in pieces 
like The Marquis von Keith, Oaha, HidaUa, The 
Dance of Death, Minihaha, The Elixir of Love, The 
Concert Singer, Washed in All Waters, Hunted by 
AU Hounds, and so forth, — ^the characters in these 
plays are scarcely existent. They are either the ani- 
mated mouthpieces for Wedekind's personal opinion^ 
or the opposing spirits necessary to keep the con- 
troversy going. 

Wedekind's short stories are as different from his 
dramatic works as again his poems are different 
from the stories. The poems, collected in a volume 
under the title of Die Vier Jahreszeiten {The Four 
Seasons), are written for the most part in irregular 
blank verse and, though sometimes poetical in con- 
ception, are thoroughly indifferent in execution. 
The rhymed pieces are even worse: comparable to 
what one may find any day in the **funny column*' 
of an evening paper. 

In his short stories, nine in number and gathered 
under the title of Feuerwerk (Fireworks), the domi- 
nant note is passion. They are forceful tales of 



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FRANK WEDEKIND 493 

startlmg incidents^ generally told by the per- 
son to whom the experience came. It is an 
artifice much abused by inferior writers, but Wede- 
kind employs it with ^IL It gives the stories the 
very dramatic power and crispness which is so often 
lacking in his plays. Here the characters of his 
unagination, whether Swiss peasant-lad or Russian 
princess, Babbi Ezra or a fin-de-siecle lover, are 
drawn with pitiless accuracy and speak their own 
language without ever showing their parentage in 
the mind of the author. 

The severest criticism that can be addressed to 
Wedekind the novelist is that he lacks depth and 
consecutiveness of thought. It is difficult to discern 
any more of the author ^s viewpoint in his stories 
than that he considers passion the one great movens 
and agens of the universe. 

What, in short, is Wedekind 's message? Ah, 
there's the rubl It is so hidden imder mountains of 
expounding talk, so elusive, so contradictory and 
inconsistent, that one is hardly able to make it out 
clearly, — ^the purpose of one work always seeming 
to destroy the conclusion of the other. The worst of 
it is that the author himself evidently ignores 
whither he is drifting. 

And that is the greatest reproach to be made to 
a man of Wedekind 's ability to think and to write: 
he has no positive goal, he is not sure of himself, 
and, furthermore, he treats his medium of expres- 
sion altogether too negligently. He is an undis- 
ciplined force, but one capable of giving a vigorous 
impulse. He is not a great artist, because of the 
imperfection of his form, which always lacks the 
stamp of definitiveness, of finality. But the vision- 
ary and the involuntary humorist in him make one 
overlook to a certain extent his artistic shortcom- 



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494 FRANK WEDEKIND 

ings. One feels that to Wedekind, the revolutionary 
moralist, the independent thinker, civilized humanity 
owes attention and respect. If his arguments do not 
always carry conviction, it is often, no doubt, because 
he works them out in his mind only, leaving his heart 
unconcerned. But is not that also the case with 
George Bernard ShawT 

Fb^cbs C. Fay. 



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DEPERSONALIZING THE INSTRUMENTS OP 

DRAMA 







'M^ 



^N writing about the production of David 
Copper field at His Majesty's Theatre, at 
Christmas, the critic of the London 
11^ Tm^$ made use of this observation: 
^ **Two things are absolute essentials (to 
the adaptation): to give us the reidly 
critical points of the Dickensian curve 
and to shine by his own (the adapter's) absence." 
That is common sense. But every one must have 
noticed that the tendency in the theatre is for the 
instnunents of the drama to become more and more 
personal to the point of excluding that precious ele- 
ment which is becoming associated in the minds of 
advanced persons with drama, altogether. And the 
one or two attempts that are being made to recapture 
the impersonal note are singularly confused and in- 
effective. There is for instance the present talk of 
a ^'rhythmic drama." Now such a form of drama 
supposes in each play a fundamental rhythm which 
manifests itself throughout in a single unbroken 
creative movement (as the said Dickensian curve 
might do if properly adapted). We may assume 
therefore that such a movement stores itself as it 
goes in harmonious rhythmic forms of sound, color, 
line, and the like, with the ultimate object of secur- 
ing the fullest freedom of rhythmic creative effect 
through such forms, upon the spectator. Thus the 
dominant rhythm does not change. Upon its immu- 
tability depends the truth and intensity of its ulti- 

495 



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496 INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 

mate effect upon the spectator. Bonghly speaking, if 
it starts as a round rhythm it mnst reach its highest 
sweep as a round rhythm. Any attempt to force it 
through square rhythms must alter its character and 
flow. It is useless to argue that the square rhythms 
of the instruments of expression (say the square per- 
sonalities of author and actors) are of as much im- 
portance as the roimd rhythms; because one can 
reply that the only thing that matters in a play is the 
fundamental note of drama represented by the round 
rhythm, that this note is gathered from the infinite 
by a unique individuality specially adapted for the 
purpose, and thereafter it is sent on its course to 
the spectator by instruments delicately in tune with 
the master instrument (the author). It is re- 
grettable that those who are seeking to establish an 
impersonal form of drama do not see these facts 
clearly, and do not see that such a form of drama 
can only be transmitted impersonally, that is by per- 
sons who act by no wiU or conscience of their own. 
For if they did see these things it is conceivable they 
would cease to bring up arguments apparently in 
favor of depersonalisation but reaUy favoring rep- 
resentations conditioned by personal means. 

Perhaps they would have a clearer notion of the 
work to be done if they were to answer a question 
like the following: Suppose that drama is an im- 
personal element; suppose that it attains its end, 
namely, the greatest creative dramatic effect upon 
the spectator, by impersonal means: — ^would it not 
demand that the instruments should be such in their 
effects as would prevent the spectator becoming ac- 
quainted with their personal facts? In other words, 
ought the drama to obliterate everything but itself t 
And if so, how is this to be achieved t Naturally, the 
sane answer is this, that everything in a dramatic 



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INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 497 

production must lead and be subservient to a higher 
principle than that by which it is consciously actu- 
ated. The mind and conscience of the author, 
producer, actor, composer and decorator and spec- 
tator must be reconciled to the working of this prin- 
ciple. The implication is that first place should be 
given to the unconscious (upon which it is now be- 
lieved by scientists and philosophers the conscious 
artificially constructs itself), and that the only state 
in a theatre which favors ihe complete and efficient 
transmission of the dramatic element is a dream 
state. I imagine that the eternal verities, expressing 
themselves as movements in space, are the intense 
articulations of dream-stuff. The drama becomes a 
mould for the movements in space and gives an 
appropriate outwardness and sensation of reality to 
the substance of each dream. But I will not contuiue 
at this part of the new world of ideas. It may come 
up for treatment another time. 

I want here to indulge in one or two speculative 
generalisations on drama and the means of ridding 
it of checks that prevent its producing the greatest 
creative dramatic effect upon the spectator. Besides 
this I want to estimate some present-day experi- 
ments in elimination. 

I have postulated an ultimate creative dramatic 
effect upon the spectator, and I have postulated as 
the cause of this effect, an unconscious unbroken 
movement or force, which I call drama. The uncon- 
scious nature of this force supposes transmitters 
that work unconsciously. They exercise neither will 
nor conscience of their own in this particular trans- 
mission. As the force ascends through them, sensi- 
bility remains but consciousness disappears. They 
emerge only as the conductors of this external and 
eternal force. They are indeed seen as so many foci 



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498 INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 

of instinctive agency through which the main move- 
ment sends out subsidiary movements that return to 
the main movement before the climax is reached. By 
their means the true individuality of drama is dis- 
closed and preserved. As the expression of eternal 
truth passes into the reservoir of sensibility formed 
by the impersonal author, producer, actor, designer, 
composer, it actuates all the organs of motion, spon- 
taneously reaches its widest sweep and finally mani- 
fest& itself upon the spectator at a maximum in- 
tensity humanly possible. By the force of the in- 
tensity the spectator is given a moment of creative 
energy. He is carried out of himself, initiated into 
the truth of what he experiences. The material 
bandage is removed from his eyes, and he sees him- 
self transmuted into spiritual substance. It is in the 
process of unwinding the material self till the spir- 
itual self is reached, that the action of drama actu- 
ally lies. And it is the watching of this process by 
the character who is being unwrapped, and the 
strengthening fear that it will lead to extinction, 
because when he has been stripped of all material 
possessions nothing of a spiritual value will remain, 
— it is this initiation of man into the truth of his 
higher self, of the nature and extent of his link with 
eternity, that constitutes tragedy. What is there 
more poignant than the sight of man dispossessed of 
the earth to which he has attached the utmost value, 
realising that he has no foothold in heaven and that 
he has got to win one or perish spiritually. I fancy 
that the drama of initiation, showing the small be^ 
ginnings of grace and attaining the fullest percep- 
tion of glory (the vision of the higher self) is the 
great and coming thing. The new occupation for 
dramatists will be that of refining away the bodies 
of their central characters and crowning the souls 



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INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 499 

with immortality. Only dramatists of the highest 
sensibility can do it. Any fool can write a discus- 
sion play, but it takes a genius to put eternity on 
the stage. 

So we find that a significant movement has to be 
transmitted in its own way. By what means is this 
to be achieved f Certain receptive mediums have to 
be chosen whose sensibility prompts them to act 
alone in response to an influence which operates upon 
their senses. That is, they must be prepared by cer- 
tain qualities of their nervous organization, and by 
individual bodily temperament to receive this vibra- 
tory force, and to act in unison when transmitting it. 
This, of course, implies a subordination and sacr^ce 
of mind and self. Well, it cannot be helped. If we 
choose to make ourselves responsible for the trans- 
mission of divinity we must be responsible divinely. 
**But,'' someone will ask, ** where is the passive 
author, the first receptive medium, to be foundf'^ 
My answer is that I do not think it would be difficult 
to find individuals endowed with a healthy sensitive- 
ness open to the contagion (if I may put it so) of 
significant dramatic sensations. There are many 
playwrights in whom the imconscious is strongly 
developed and who would give it a hearing if they 
had the chance. There are others who are so en- 
dowed, but alas, consciously bury their precious en- 
dowment beneath a heap of culture. Thus we find 
that in some cases culture is that hotbed upon which 
plays are reared, while in others, the impersonal 
being, the strongest point of their authors' nature, 
this element is uppermost. As an illustration of my 
meaning, let me take Mr. Bernard Shaw and Ibsen. 
Both of these authors have strong sensibility, both 
have culture superimposed upon their sensibility, 
both are naturally and deeply sympathetic. Here 



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500 INSTRUMENTS OF THE, DRAMA 

the dbmparison ends. If we turn to their plays we 
shall see where the difference lies. In Mr. Shaw the 
social side of his nature is strongly developed; in 
Ibsen the individualist stands out. In the first, cul- 
ture is uppermost; in the second art is apparent. 
Mr. Shaw is always at the level of consciousness, 
always explaining things, always telling us what he 
knows. He examines and states his views on the 
interests and activities which are conscious to the 
social individual. Ibsen works mainly in the uncon- 
scious region and discloses the content of the uncon- 
scious in the individual The interest of Nora, for 
instance, is not contained in the working of her con- 
scious mind, but in the unconscious elements which 
throughout the play seek to come to the surface and 
do, in fact, declare themselves when the climax is 
reached and Nora learns the truth of her relation 
to the man she has married. So Mr. Shaw is per- 
sonal; Ibsen is impersonal The one speaks through 
his characters ; as to the other, the characters speak 
through him. Every one of Mr. Shaw's characters 
is conditioned, actualized and interpreted by Mr. 
Shaw; every one of Ibsen's characters is part of an 
unconscious creative movement. This movement is 
seen in each play as the growth and progression of 
a soul curve, and all the minor characters are the 
subordinate rhythms which the central character or 
movement throws out and which return upon the 
movement to strengthen the great spiritual climax. 
Thus Ibsen's curve is the true life-curve. His basis 
of plot is the spiritual, not physical nature of man. 
And in man's gradual attainment of the perception 
of his higher self, and consequent disillusion con- 
cerning his material importance, is contained the 
issue of Ibsen's plays. In his play construction 
Ibsen observes, at least, one great mystical condi- 



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INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 501 

tioiL The first and last are one. The first note and 
last note of each play are one, but raised in the end 
to a higher key. The opening chord resolves through 
various harmonies and discords to a higher key, that 
is, progresses from the physical climax to the spir- 
itual one. Thus he seems to say : ' ^ In spirit there is 
neither beginning nor end.'* Mr. Shaw's curve on 
the contrary is a death-curve. He is solely concerned 
with the physical nature of man, and is therefore 
bound to end on the level at which he begins. 

The finest example of Ibsen's spiral progression 
is to be found in A DolVs House, wherein Nora is 
seen progressing to a full illumination of the infinite 
worth of her soul. The critical point of Mr. 
Shaw's plays is usually reached about the middle of 
the curve. In Pygmalion it attains its height on 
the word ** bloody" and thereafter falls rapidly to 
inertia or death. I need not pursue the comparison 
further. I hope to work it out in detail later. My 
point is, given an Ibsen free of culture and we have 
the ideal author. What Ibsen knew did not matter. 
What he felt was of first class importance. I am 
afraid it is not possible to distil anything out of the 
Shaw type. It is too deeply smitten with the infirm- 
ity of personal translation. Besides what can we 
do with a man who consciously binds himself in the 
icy chains of obstinate imemotionalism. 

So much for the passive author. Now for the pas- 
sive producer. It is not so easy to get rid of the 
personal producer, partly because such producers 
have become the f asMon, and partly because produc- 
ing plays excites the feelings and ideas which com- 
pose the conscious mind, and thus leads the producer 
to stamp everybody and thing in a production with 
his own hall mark. We know how the infection has 
caught certain more or less distinguished play- 



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502 INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 

producers. Look how Sir Arthur Pinero leaves his 
conscious mark on the stage. The mark is a geo- 
metrical one and is particularly noticeable in the 
arrangement of his stage-figures. 

The figures continue throughout a play to group 
and regroup with a geometrical nicety utterly at vari- 
ance with actual movements with the result that the 
spectator finds himself watching for these manifesta- 
tions of Sir Arthur 's personality. Then look how Mr. 
Granville Barker always works at the level of con- 
r ! sciousness. There are no unconscious elements, no 

I evidences of physical processes beyond the scope of 

; I consciousness in his productions. Every person and 

item is carefully edited. There is a definition and a 
' reason for all things. In fact the conscious miad of 

i the producer, the personality if you will, and not the 

play or dramatic flow, is uppermost, ^d then look 
how Max Beinhardt works. Here is a producer who 
does leave a door open to the unconscious. His main 
aim is to squeeze the dramatic element out of play 
and player till it saturates the spectator. In doing 
so he offers first place to the imconscious, but, alas, 
he sometimes builds upon this with conscious 
processes. Here and there we feel the producer be- 
hind the production. Still Max Beinhardt comes 
near to the ideal producer. If he dreams of a dram- 
atic atmosphere, he does everything in his power to 
produce and preserve it. It is not altogether his 
fault that in realising his dream he cannot make 
actors, scenery and accessories melt away. Perhaps 
it is his misfortune. He is not the man for the job. 

So much for the passive producer. It is also di£Gi- 
cult to obliterate the personal actor. The attempt 
to get rid of him by ensemble acting has only changed 
the problem, not solved it. We are now faced with a 
collective personality. Likewise the attempt to re- 



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INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 503 

place him by a receptive medium specially invented 
for the purpose, does not promise froitfnl results. 
Common sense tells us that the finest mechanical doll 
cannot be expected to produce results equal to those 
to be obtained from an impressionable human being. 
The marionette is at the best but a soulless automa- 
ton. If it is true that it has no will or personality 
of its own, it is also true that it is worked by the will 
and personality of an operator. Thus it becomes 
the symbol of a symbol instead of being a symbol of 
the thing itself. It manifests the conscious mind 
behind it, whereas it should express the imconscious 
flow of drama. In other words it does not and can- 
not express infinite psychic experiences. It can only 
operate according to the conscious imagination or 
mteUect of its operator — so that very little of the 
fundamental flow is seen in its action. But if the 
mechanical doll is not an efficient symbol, it points 
the way to one. I think the ideal actor will be f oimd 
in a flesh and blood marionette, one who is able to 
catoh and transmit the actual psychic experiences 
of the author, to live in the original flux without dis- 
turbing by a conscious mind the truth of its flow. 
The actor-marionette should be able to express the 
unconscious as in a moving trance. 

Finally I come to passive scenery. I do not think 
we are likely to come to this form of scenery yet 
awhile, at least not till scenic reformers have made 
up their minds as to what precisely the scene is. Let 
me give them a hint to work upon. The screen that 
is thrown around a play is, in my theory, the inevi- 
table extension of the intensity of the play itself. It 
is something extended by the play in order to in- 
tensify its own effect upon the spectator and to com- 
plete the illusion. Let me put it this way. If the 
acting in a play were sufficiently intense and the re- 



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504 INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 

ceptiveness of the spectator sufficiently acute, no 
scenery would be required, simply because the in- 
tensity of the acting would serve to obliterate every- 
thing but itself. One can believe that this is what 
happened at an early period of the world's history 
when men were poets, actors and spectators rolled 
in one. They were raised by certain intense experi- 
ences to such a high pressure of lyrical expression 
as to become transfigured for the time being. Now 
acting has dropped far below this high pressure 
with the result that it fails to express actuality at a 
higher pressure than actuality. Therefore it re- 
quires an artificial aid to strengthen its interest and 
to prevent the mind of the spectator from wandering 
to actual things which do not belong to the play itself. 
In the decay of intense acting, I tlunk, may be found 
the origin, growth, and development of appropriate 
and inappropriate scenery. Today on every side 
are to be found screens that protrude and distract by 
sheer impressiveness of personality. They are in 
fact of more importance than the plays themselves 
to which they are often tacked on as a means of con- 
cealing their worthlessness. It will be gathered 
from the foregoing that the only way to deperson- 
alise scenery is to make it gradually melt into that 
from which it originally came. It must become, once 
more, a part of the fluidity of the play. And in due 
course when acting renews its high and intense char- 
acter, it will disappear altogether. No one will ask 
for it except persons with weak imaginations and 
weaker sensibility. It is a good sign that something 
is being done to depersonaUse scenery, even though 
this something is off the track as yet. I refer to the 
experiments with Space. The attempt to put Space 
on the stage is being feverishly pursued but the re- 
sults are disappointing, so far. I find that the same 



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INSTRUMENTS OF THE DRAMA 505 

objection to the stage use of a mechanical doll, 
applies to the stage use of Space. We may ask, how 
does Space (atmospheric Space) symbolise or vis- 
ualise the author's vision? Well, it does not visu- 
alise the author's vision, because the author does not 
have a vision of Space. He is aware of something 
growing out of it. And when he puts this something 
on the stage, he has to construct a Space that will suit 
its stage requirements. This means that he has to 
bring Space, together with all the elements that 
called forth his vision, in the theatre. Of course he 
cannot do this. The most he can do is to eliminate 
the actual elements and to use his judgment and 
consciousness to replace them with the artificial ones 
at his disposal Everything must be artificially cor- 
rect to recall the real thing, yet we know they are 
actually false. This sort of personal impersonal 
symbol will not do. I would rather have a human 
symbol, one focusing and suggesting by his passions 
and interest the eternal elements contained in space. 

HUNTLY CaBTEB. 



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JAMES SHIELEY, DRAMATIST 

James Shirley, Dramatist, by Arthur H. Nason 

Published by the author. University Heights, New 
York City 

IN these days of the making of many books 
y upon the drama it is inevitable that only 
^ now and then will a noteworthy volume 
^ appear. Such is James Shirley, Drama- 
y^ tist, by Professor Arthur Huntington 
J Nason, of New York University and the 
Union Theological Seminary. It is a sin- 
gular fact that ^Hhe last of the Elizabethans and the 
prophet of the Bestoration'' has so long rested in 
comparative obscurity — ^that it has remained until 
the present, and for Dr. Nason, to turn upon this 
minor star of a mighty constellation the perspective 
glass of scholarly research and criticisuL The re- 
sults prove the wisdom of the undertaking. Shirley, 
though often overshadowed by his predecessors and 
his followers, proves a poet and a playwright, not 
so much of the decadence of the drama which marked 
his period, as of the fertile promise which in Caro- 
line England was cut short by almost purely political 
developments. 

Speaking of one of Shirley's latest pieces, Edmund 
Qosse says: ^^When we think what English drama, 
from Tamburlaine the Great to The Cardinal, con- 
sists of, we may well marvel at the wealth poured 
out in sixty years. '* Shirley's plays are preemi- 
nently of this wealth, of which the luxuriance of his 

506 



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JAMES SHIRLEY 507 

fancy, his ''discreet, sober, and sweet-tempered'^ 
style, his ever-increasing skill in dramatic construc- 
tion, and his occasionally exalted poetic attainments 
form no inconsiderable part. Moreover, as this 
same commentator points out, Shirley, though he 
wrote during a time of decadence, did not contribute 
to the retrogression, since he was ''entirely unaf- 
fected by the striking faults of his age, its violence, 
its obscurity, its prosodical license/' 

Dr. Nason's recent study falls into two main divi- 
sions: the first in which he gives the results of a 
thorough and painstaking investigation of Shirley's 
life; and the second in which we find a complete 
account of the dramatist's work, chronologically con- 
sidered, resumes of all his plays, an analysis of each 
from the dramatic and the literary point of view, a 
consideration of the playwright's development, and 
important generalizations based upon the entire 
scrutiny. 

Bom during the reign of Elizabeth, "schoolboy, 
university man, and teacher in the reign of James I. ; 
favorite dramatist of the court of Charles, friend of 
the king, and champion of the queen ; follower of the 
Duke of Newcastle in the Civil War; and schoolmas- 
ter again and miscellaneous writer," Shirley in his 
career affords an extraordinary variety and scope. 
For one of his masques, as for Comtis, Lawes com- 
posed the music, and Inigo Jones designed the 
scenery. Of thirty-one plays, twelve, upon analysis, 
turn out to be realistic pictures of London life and 
manners, connecting Jonson and Congreve; one 
proves a hybrid; and eighteen are of a romanticism 
that joins Fletcher to Dryden. 

As to Shirley's life, Dr. Nason's minute considera- 
tion of the available evidence, including much that 
is new, dears up many points. Three of ten-aooepted 



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508 JAMES SHIRLEY 

hypotheses regarding the dramatist's parentage are 
rejected as without proof, and a fourth is substituted 
and convincingly sustained — ^that the ^^James, son 
of James Sharlie,** baptized in St. Mary Wool- 
church, September seventh, 1596, was the future 
playwright. Similarly other facts of Shirley's 
career are investigated, as is each of his plays with 
reference to dates of composition, licensing, per- 
formance, and publication. This part of the volume 
ends with a reproduction of Shirley's will, not pre- 
viously in print. 

The study of the plays yields the interesting con- 
clusion that Shirley, who has often been superfi- 
cially classified as a realist, though he was mudi 
taken with comedy of manners and of humors, yet 
'^gave himself even more earnestly to dramatic 
romance, to romantic comedy, and to romantic 
tragedy.'* As the author puts it: **The career of 
James Shirley, dramatist, is itself a drama, in which 
the contending forces are realism and romanticism, 
and in which romanticism is ultimately triumphant." 
Clearly revealing the Jonsonian influence, the come- 
dies of manners often resolve themselves into come- 
dies of humors as well — Hyde Park, The Ball, The 
Gamester, for example. On the other hand, The 
Traitor, The Young Admiral, The Royal Master, and 
others, with their intrigues of statecraft or of love 
and their scenes of amazement or poetic charm, are 
clearly reminiscent of Fletcher and of Shakspere. 

Eight out of eleven plays belonging to Shirley's 
** first period," according to Dr. Nason's division, 
are definitely realistic. Romanticism, however, 
makes its appearance in the dramatist's first piece. 
Love Tricks, **a patchwork of romance, humor, man- 
ners, farce, pastoral, and masque," which Swinburne 
has called **a feebly preposterous and impotently 



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JAMES SHIRLEY 509 

imitative abortion, . • • the product of second- 
hand hnmor and second-rate sentiment," and which 
Dr. Nason shrewdly suggests **for this very reason 
needs only appropriate music, costuming, and 
scenery to make it an acceptable rival to the latest 
Broadway *show/ '' 

Shirley's next play, The Maid's Revenge, is 
tragedy — ^his worst, we are told, as obviously a first 
attempt should be. Into the third piece. The Wed- 
ding, a comedy of manners, comes **a faint influence 
of Shaksperian romantic comedy.** Writing more 
leisurely thereafter, Shirley follows the usual pro- 
cedure and experiments in several fields. The Witty 
Fair One is realistic comedy of manners and of 
humors; The Grateful Servant is romantic comedy 
with a realistic underplot; The Traitor is romantic 
tragedy. In all these plays the writer shows his 
increasing power in stagecraft and in grasp of 
human character. ^'For a major dramatist at the 
height of his career,'* as Dr. Nason puts it, ^^The 
Traitor would have been a creditable production ; for 
a minor dramatist scarce out of his apprenticeship 
The Traitor is a memorable production.** 

In the second and third periods of Shirley's devel- 
opment, we see how the romantic influence of 
Fletcher and Shakspere gradually triumphs over 
the realistic influence of Fletcher and Jonson, as to 
both quantity and quality of output. Of thirty-one 
plays more than eighteen are shown to be primarily 
romantic, less than thirteen primarily realistic. 
Bomanticism has definitely taken for her own one 
who is ''a just pretender to more than the meanest 
place among the English poets ... by some 
accounted little inferior to Fletcher himself.** 

Throughout his treatise Dr. Nason *s style is lucid 
and pleasing; and the structure of his work is a 



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510 JAMES SHIRLEY 

model of clearness and simplicity, as might be ex- 
pected of a writer who is also an authority of fast- 
growing importance on English composition. A 
complete and accurate bibliography of Shirley's 
plays and of extant works on the dramatist crowns 
this sympathetic but always unbiased account and 
estimate of a poet so well worth the labor involved. 
Dr. Nason's volume is an altogether readable, ex- 
haustive, and authoritative contribution to literary 
and dramatic criticisuL 

Chablton Andbbws. 



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PLATING HAMLET AS SHAKESPEARE 
STAGED IT IN 1601* 



Shakespeare put on his Hamlet in 1601 
at the Globe Theatre, he created from 
the start, by means of his stage setting, 
an effect compelling the right mood. Not 
the rise of a curtain but the blast of a 
bugle announced the original beginning 
of Shakespeare's tragedy. I am not sure 
but we miss in our modem reproductions even here, 
at the mere preface to the play, something stirringly 
atmospheric. That prolonged triple blare of a 
clarion sounding out into ttie open air above the 
head from the turret of the four-story feudal tower 
that formed at once the ever ready practicable in- 
terior and the ever present scenic background of 
Shakespeare's stage — ^what a challenge that lofty 
note would needs be to the ear of the dramatic imag- 
ination if for us too today Hamlet could so begin! 
If instead of a machinery-regulated curtain, sliding 
up in a groove, a martial trumpet-tone were boldly 
volleyed out from on high, would it not prove to be 
an alarm to the senses, preparing them to seize the 
storied world-environment t In tune with such a 
summons, in harmony with such a scenic background, 
this play was grown and cradled. 

A contrasting quiet, an empty fore-stage, twenty- 
two feet deep of space and stillness, beginning mid- 

♦Copyright 1915, by Charlotte Porter, Apply to Charlotte Porter, 
The Drama, for farther partieolars and for the right to use this 
setting. 

511 



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512 PLATING HAMLET 

house and in the very heart of the audience, and 
stretching on to the blank and tightly shut gates of 
the castle tower looming up at the rear of the stage ! 
Not a trace of life is to be seen there — ^but loneliness, 
aloofness, night. The modem setting puts the senti- 
nels there; Shakespeare's does not. The modem 
setting does this because it follows a stage direction 
not Shakespeare's: '^An open place before the 
Palace. ' ' It was put into the text in 1709 by Shakes- 
peare 's first editor, Nicholas Bowe, and later modi- 
fied by Malone to **A platform before the Castle.*' 
Like the rest of such scene settings put into the plays 
by editors, it still leads modem stage producers ^^far 
wide" of the author's own masterly scenic effects. 

No Elizabethan could be so unreasonable as to 
permit the king of a feudal castle like Elsinore to 
station his sentinels anywhere else than where 
Shakespeare puts them. And that is aloft on the 
level walk up on the battlemented walls above the 
entrance gates. Only here, on the ^^Platforme," in 
the feudsl sense of that architectural word, could 
the man on watch, like a sea-captain perched on the 
bridge of a ship's upper deck, scour tiie country for 
the first sign of an enemy's approach and be in time 
to order the drawbridge up, the portcullis down and 
every loophole and casemate manned and ready for 
defense. 

A watchman on the ground level before the castle 
gates could be surprised. And Shakespeare takes 
good care to make fully known at the first possible 
chance in the opening of his first scene, that Ham- 
let's crafty uncle was in extraordinary fear of sur- 
prise and had taken measures against it He ex- 
pected attack at any time from Fortinbras with his 
** shark 'd up List of lawless Besolutes." Therefore 
he had ordered daily **cast of Brazen Cannon," the 



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PLATING HAMLET 513 

pnrchase of * * Implements of Warre ' ' in foreign mar- 
kets, and the ^^Impresse of Shipwrights" to task- 
work so sore and haste so sweaty that Snndays and 
weekdays, night and day were aU one to the Danish 
laborer. Meanwhile the sentinels toiled nightly in 
**this same strict and most observant watch" upon 
the walls of Elsinore. 

One other mighty masterpiece — ^the Agamemnon 
of ^sdiylns — strikes as stark a key as Shakes- 
peare's Hamlet. It also begins at dead of night with 
no other sign of life abont the palace doors below, 
bnt only above on the roof where the lonely watch- 
man keeps a sharp lookout for the first flare of the 
signal-fires. 

Bnt where is there a mate for the next thrill of 
dread in Hamlet f It is made effective by this same 
stage setting above the gates on the castle walls. A 
pacing sentinel on duty np there on the walls makes 
his entrance by turning the right comer of the tower. 
Immediately there falls upon him one of those 
'^glimpses of the Moon," later making ^^ night 
hidious" to Hamlet's eyes when they center upon 
the Ghost. Now this spectral effect startles the re- 
lieving sentinel, as he also at the same instant ap- 
pears on the walls by turning the opposite comer of 
the tower. Immediately, the relieving sentinel — 
mind you ! the relieving sentinel, not the one on duty 
— ^betrays his uncommon state of nervous apprehen- 
sion by crying out. ^^ Who's there t" 

Because of this particular stage setting no Eliza- 
bethan could possibly mistake that spasm of in- 
stinctive fright of a ghost for fear of a foe. A foe 
would come from outside, not inside the fortress. 
Only for the modem auditor, who sees the scene 
wrongly placed on the ground level before the castle 
gates, may the opening words denote fear of an 



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;| 514 PLATING HAMLET 

enemy. Aloft on the ramparts, inside the fort, this 
cry cannot be equivocal. It proclaims itself as fright 
of a peculiar kind. The audience is primed from the 
start for the story presently to be told by that reliev- 
ing sentinel of the dreaded sight before ^^ twice 
seene*' by him. 

This spectral moonlight effect was managed sim- 
ply enough in 1601 by means of a light in the upper 
rear-stage cast by a big globular cresset lamp. Cot- 
grave, in 1611, describes a cresset light to be such 
as **they use in Playhowses.^* It was made of 
** ropes pitched and wreathed and put in an open 
cage of iron." 

Now at Bamardo's bidding they sit down on the 
steps leading to the grated window in the front wall 
of the guard room. Mark now how necessary and 
convenient tliis*stage business of sitting down is for 
the free passage of the Ghost presently along the 
walk on the walls. In the modem stage setting the 
actors have no reason for sitting except because the 
text so bids. In Shakespeare's setting the dialogue 
so arranges because the width of the walk, say four 
feet, required it, and the entire action designed for 
that place suited it. 

Let me interpose here that for stage purposes the 
first story of the tower of the Globe Theatre (1599- 
1613) had to be as low as looks would well admit 
architecturally, in order to make it feasible dra- 
matically, since the actors sometimes needed to jump 
from the walls to the ground with an appearance of 
risk yet without real harm. Arthur, for example, in 
King John, risks such a jump and is supposed to be 
killed by it. These steps down from the second story 
window of the tower to the level of the walk on the 
lower story wall were devices to shorten the leap or 
the descent by ladder from this balcony, while at the 



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PLATING HAMLET 515 

same time also lifting the window high enough above 
the top of the battlements to be seen well when it 
was -asedj as in Romeo and JuUet, for example, 
to open np an interior scene in the second story of 
the tower. In a word, the lower story of the tower — 
that as castle or palace, pavilion, or cave, always 
stood at the rear of Shakespeare's main stage — ^had 
to be as low as requisite for any stage convenience 
whatsoever, and yet seem as lofty as possible to look 
well and to carry the wide doorway opening with 
double practicable doors set in the lower story front- 
age. T3ie full twelve feet, called for by the height of 
the lower galleries of the auditorium in the contract 
of 1599 for building the Fortune Theatre like the 
Globe, was eased unobtrusively by these steps down 
from the second floor level of the upper chimiber to 
the level of the walk whereon the Ghost had to pass 
when the stage of the Globe was set for Hamlet. 

Bamardo faces the others as they sit He is still 
standing on the steps with his back to the left when 
he tells them his story for he has just pointed 
above him to the open sky that is ** westward from 
the Pole.'' So he has his back to the Ghost when it 
enters round the left comer. Marcellus, being 
furthest to the right and highest on the steps, is the 
one in a position to be the first to see the Ghost, and 
he is the first to rise and give the warning, — * * Peace, 
breake thee off : looke where it comes againe. " Bar- 
nardo must now have turned to look and is appar- 
ently nearer it, for he is made to give the descrip- 
tion, — ^**In the same figure like the Bang that's 
dead." 

The apparition is advancing, meanwhile, for Bar- 
nardo, nearest to it at first, has evidently seen it pass 
in front of him and go a little toward Horatio and 
pause, facing him, when, commenting on the words 



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516 PLAYING HAMLET 

of Marcellus, — **ThoTi art a Scholar; speake to it, 
Horatio/* — Bamardo says what he thinks of the 
Ghost's way of taking what Marcellns said. Bar- 
nardo says : * ' It would be spoke to. * * That is what 
it wants. 

Then Horatio does speak, but his words are not 
happy. *'What art thou that usurp 'st this hour of 
night f ' * Usurp 'st * ' was surely not an ingratiating 
word to use to a royal ghost who was himself mur- 
dered by one now usurping his throne. The effect of 
Horatio's word on the Ghost is made clear. Mar- 
cellus, the nearest to it when it disdainfully walks 
away after this, is the one to see that it is 
'* offended.'' Bamardo now comes down the steps 
to look after it, as having passed him it goes on its 
way along the walls. It has its back turned to him 
when he cries, — * ' See, it stalkes away. ' ' Horatio, the 
next to descend the steps, then cries after it, — **Stay ! 
Speake, speake, speake." Marcellus, nearest the 
right, comes down the steps last, when the Ghost 
leaves him finally the space to do so, and he is the 
last to see it as it rounds the right comer of the 
tower and passes off on the walls out of sight from 
the front. 

I have never seen the stage business of the text 
work out as vividly and minutely with any modem 
stage setting as with the one here indicated. The 
action upon the Ghost's reappearance confirms it. 

Horatio's final speech at the close of this scene is 
a notable one with respect to the scenic setting. His 
bidding to the others to look where the **Mome in 
Russet mantle clad, Walkes o'er the dew of yon high 
Easteme Hill" fits in with Bamardo 's speech at the 
opening of the scene when he from his position at 
the right had spoken of the star that stood ** West- 
ward from the Pole." 



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PLATING HAMLET 517 

These two speeches combine to fix the points of the 
compass for the Globe stage setting of the play. 
Still more I Since Hamlet is in agreement with the 
other plays in such betokenings^ it combines with 
these to determine the permanent location on the 
Globe stage of such hill and woodland scenic settings 
as Horatio mentions. 

Hill and woodland, orchard and garden settings 
to the left of the tower are as habitual a factor of 
Shakespeare's stage as the tower itself is. Here, 
flanking the tower, were placed the trees standing 
for **Bimam Wood'' in Macbeth, ** Windsor Forest" 
in the Merry Wives, ihe ** Cyprus Grove" in Corio- 
lanus, the **Line Grove" in The Tempest. Here, 
too, were arranged the shrubbery and bushes pre- 
senting the ** Orchards" of Hamlet, Julius Ccesar, 
Much Adoe and Twelfe Night, together with the spe- 
cial adjustment of garden properties serving for the 
"thick pleached alleye," **the Garden walke," the 
**box tree" and the "Arbor" with the "Woodbine 
coverture" needed to make possible the stage busi- 
ness of the eavesdropping scenes in those two latter 
plays. These are but a few examples out of many 
that the plays afford. There is indeed but one play 
in the whole thirty-seven, — and that single excep- 
tion is in itself significant, since it is Henry VIIL 
— ^which is entirely a palace-interior play and with- 
out any trace of Shakespeare's usual outdoor effects. 
It is not so surprising that a woodland or garden 
scene is permanently arranged for on Shakespeare's 
outdoor main stage as it is that we have been so slow 
to notice the evidence both outside and inside the 
plays in proof of such arrangements. 

The contemporary accounts by Dr. Simon Forman 
of the performances witnessed by him at the Globe, 
of Macbeth in 1610, of The Winters Tale in 1611, 



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518 PLATING HAMLET 

of Cymbelvne — doubtless in the same year, since 
Forman died in September of 1611— ought to be 
enough to convince anybody of Shakespeare's wood- 
land scenes. These accounts describe these plays as 
Forman saw them^ and he speaks of Macbeth and 
Banquo as coming out **thorow a Wood.'' He tells 
how the baby Perdita was **laid in a Forrest," where 
she was found by the shepherd. And Imogen is re- 
ported by him as having chanced on ^Hhe Cave in 
the woods" where her two brothers were. Later, 
when they thought she was dead, he says, they **laid 
her in the Woods." 

Actual trees — ^the real thing — ^and good green 
growth from outdoors were carried inside, we know, 
in the sixteenth century to serve at court as scenery 
for plays. Special realistic properties, in the round, 
were devised besides for woodland effects. The few 
entries following, chosen from the Bevels documents 
recently made known by Feuillerat, are enough to tell 
the story here of Tudor precedent for Shakespeare's 
woodland and garden scenery. 

**Christmasse 1573. . • . To Henry Callaway 
. . . .for carriage of trees to the Court for a Wil- 
demesse in a play. . . . tymber for the f orrest, fir 
poles . . • and to one that gathered mosse." 

** 1571-2. ... A tree of holly for the Buttons 
playe. . . . other Holly for the forest . . . vj It. 
xiij d. which grew by propertyes videlicit . . . 
mountaynes, fforestes, . . . mosse, holly, Ivye, 
Bayes, flowers. . . . Mistris Dane for canvas to 
paynte for howses for the players and for other 
properties as . . . greate hollow trees. ..." 
(Feuillerat, 241, 175.) 

In the face of such testimony to customs early 
enough to have been followed by Shakespeare on the 
public stage and as natural, too, to a period not yet 



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PLATING HAMLET 519 

dependent on the scene-painter of flat scenes, as they 
are nnnatnral to onr own period so long dependent 
ni>on him, we are driven to conclude that we have 
been absolutely unjustified in taking it for granted 
that Shakespeare's stage was without its own called- 
f or scenic properties merely because it did not have 
our own particular kind of trees and bushes painted 
in the flat on wings, borders and back-drops. 

Precisely because the sixteenth century had not 
learned to lean on a false flat scene it sought a real- 
istic solid one. And in the half -unroof ed both out- 
door and indoor folk-theatre of sixteenth century 
London to be on borrowing terms with their next 
door neighbor, Nature, was easy and inexpensive. 

I 8usi)ect it is not at all unlikely to be true, nor 
is it unlikely that the Wallaces will not be able to 
unearth the evidence for it, that the hurried builders 
of the Globe, when they carted and boated the lum- 
ber from the torn down theatre in Shoreditch to use 
again in their new theatre on the Bankside, may 
have followed instinctively the tendency of Greek 
theatre builders to choose out a site adapted to serve 
as a natural amphitheatre. In case they shared in 
tendencies so naive and artistic, they may easily 
have walled into their circular enclosure, ^^ flanked 
by a sewer,*' **forced out of a marish," a con- 
venient slope at the back of the stage space or a 
well-placed growing tree perking up there in the lay 
of the land. A row of trees is, in fact, a feature, 
exactly there, of the Hof nagel map of 1573. 

At the end of the first scene, the closed doors of 
the lower stage representing the gates of the castle 
are thrown open. When the scene closed above, it 
opened below with the opening of these gates. Their 
oi)ening was a normal part of the life represented 
in the story. At the same time it was the theatrical 



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520 PLAYING HAMLET 

change of scene and the only one required. Instead 
of a stop in the action for a merely mechanical scene- 
shifting^ with little labor or cost and no loss of time 
or any disillusioning break away from the dramatic 
life enacted^ the new scene was ready for fresh 
actors. All happened as if it were in truth an actual 
incident of the morning. 

The King and his retinue entered the tower in- 
terior disclosed to view by the opening of the doors. 
This interior was at once taken to be the royal pres- 
ence chamber. Immediately, from his throne on the 
dais here the king received his ambassadors and 
petitioners. The central grouping, it may be no- 
ticed, is not in agreement with the usual side-track- 
ing of potentates affected in modem reproductions. 
The royal group is put now lengthwise or cat-a- 
comer on the stage, doubtless in order to let the star 
actor take the centre. 

On Shakespeare's stage this was needless because 
the interior set in the lower rear stage was supple- 
mented by the roomy middle and fore stages. The 
glittering Court picture was put back here within the 
tower, while dramatic action of a less static sort and 
the utterances of the hero were given the advantage 
of down stage prominence with all the realism of 
high relief against the remoter pictorial background. 

In a brilliant court scene like this, the retinue 
could ray out in an open V-shaped group from the 
enthroned king at the point of the V, right and left, 
to either side as far as desired on the outer stage 
toward the audience. Any adjoining parts of the 
outer stage thus annexed by occupation to the in- 
terior set are at once readily imagined to be ante- 
chambers or lobbies upon wMch the presence cham- 
ber opens. If the total stage was thus annexed so as 
to take in the central unroofed space, there was noth- 



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PLATING HAMLET 523 

ing mcongmous in that, for some fore court or 
quadrangle or some great open-roofed hall of state 
such as Elizabethans knew at Greenwich, was then 
imagined. The green of the trees and shrubbery at 
the left in the rear fell into the backgroimd grace- 
fully enough as the orchard garden or park in keep- 
ing with such a scene. It greatly enhanced the whole 
picture. The green rush-strewn floor lent itself to 
either outdoor or indoor effects in a day when the 
Queen's own floors bore the same carpeting of 
Nature. 

The thrust of Shakespeare's forty-three feet wide 
fore stage into the very middle of the Globe audi- 
torium made possible, moreover, what is impossible 
on the modem stage — ^f ree passage of Hamlet so far 
down to the edge of the main stage that he could be 
as aloof from the king as he would wish to be. Here 
he was a melancholy and disdainful looker-on at the 
royal retinue, from a station under the open sky and 
in the midst of the audience. Here his lightest sigh 
or subtlest shade of tone would tell upon the sym- 
pathy of his hearers. Here his first lines would 
neither lose their significance, as we shall presently 
see that they do on the modem stage, nor would 
they need the labeling of any editor as an ** aside.'' 

A lonely position for Hamlet out on the f orestage 
is revealed by every indication of character, plot and 
action, and particularly by Hamlet's first lines. In- 
tuitively Gordon Craig's imagination, as shown in 
one of his striking settings, guides to the truth. 

During the audience the king is in process of giv- 
ing, the least and last heeded is Hamlet. After all 
other business, when the ambassadors are dis- 
imtched, and Laertes is granted his petition, tlje new 
king turns to proffer the favor Hamlet has neither 
sought nor, it seems, tacitly taken for granted. Else 



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524 PLATING HAMLET 

there would be no dramatic point in the king's ques- 
tion and remonstrance and the queen's intervention. 
Upon the king's turning to the discredited prince at 
last with, — ^**But now, my cosin Hamlet and my 
Sonnet*' — Hamlet makes a sarcastic comment ob- 
viously meant for the audience and not for the king, 
— ^**A little more than Kinne and lesse than kinde." 
The modem setting forces this to be said amid the 
court group and within the king's hearing. An 
editor — Warburton — therefore interpolated an 
* * aside. ' ' Like the other * * asides ' ' peppered through 
the text of editors, it is quite neecUess on the stage 
of Shakespeare. As the next lines denote, this line 
was spoken so far off down stage that the king, up 
stage, did not need to appear to catch what the 
audience could fully enjoy. 

The king keeps on without reference to Hamlet's 
sarcasm, as if unaware of it. He makes a significant 
double allusion to Hamlet's mourning and the unrec- 
onciled position he maintains in standing out there 
under the clouds of the open sky instead of drawing 
near along with the rest of the gay and subservient 
courtiers around the throne. He asks him pointedly 
enough what he means by it. **How is it that the 
clouds still hang on you?" 

Hamlet's retort upon this is spoken directly to the 
king, and it involves a still cleverer double meaning. 
It confirms the evidence given by the king's inquiry 
as to Hamlet's place at the edge of the fore stage out 
under the unroofed central portion of the theatre: 
**Not so, my Lord, I am too much i' th' Sun." 

Readers of Shakespeare and any sixteenth cen- 
tury literature will at once notice the inner allusion 
to the old proverb. Kent calls it, in King Lear, the 
** common saw," meaning by it a fall in worldly for- 
tunes and a lack of the regulation house and home 



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PLAYING HAMLET 525 

comforts of assured life and rank/ ^ Out of Goddes 
blessing into the warme Snnne.'' 

Only when the qneen speaks to Hamlet does he go 
np sti^e toward the throne with the effect of dntifal 
subservience. Bnt he naturally turns down stage 
again for his first great soliloquy : **0h that this too 
too solid flesh would melt." Down stage, too, out of 
easy hearing of the court, must he go for the private 
talk with Horatio and the two sentinels concerning 
the Apparition seen by them these three nights 
**upon the Platforme'* where they watched. And 
here on the fore stage the other great soliloquies 
had the advantage of free and sympathetic delivery 
beyond suspicion of a foolish lack of decent caution 
on Hamlet's part, and out of range of spies and 
eavesdroppers. 

Here on the xmroofed forestage, fitly seeming to 
be lonely and wary of the court interior, Hamlet 
walks so much, indeed, that old Polonius, when he 
and the king were planning to overhear him from 
behind the curtains of Arras that could be drawn to 
and fro in the open doorway of the rear stage, be- 
comes nervous lest he stay too far away for their 
eavesdropping convenience, and so he asks him to 
come nearer up stage: **Will you walke out of the 
Ayre, my Lord?'* Hamlet's reply was double and 
pointed on Shakespeare's stage, **Into my Grave?" 
the intimation is — ^the nearer inside the precincts 
of the court where the king has power the nearer 
death for him. ** Indeed that is out of the Ayre," 
comments the serviceable old courtier. 

Another instance, corroborating Hamlet's wari- 
ness and his down stage position during this part of 
the play occurs just before when he tells Polonius 
not to let his daughter walk in the sun. Again while 
he talks to Guildenstem and Bosencrantz, he is ob- 



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526 PLAYING HAMLET 

viously forward under the sky when he makes appro- 
priate reference to **this most excellent Canopy the 
Ayre,'' and **this brave o'er-hanging, this Majesti- 
call Boofe fretted with golden fire/' 

Shakespeare, it must be remembered, unlike most 
other dramatists of his period, always had his own 
special theatre in mind when he designed his plays, 
for he was a shareholder after December, 1598, and 
he had written for his own company exclusively after 
Christmas week, 1594. We are on peculiarly safe 
ground, therefore, in drawing deductions from his 
plays as to his intended stage arrangements in 1601, 
at the Globe. Chablotte Pobteb. 

(To be concluded in The Drama for November.) 



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CHIEF CONTEMPORARY DRAMATISTS 

Chief Contemporary Dramatists. Edited by Thomas 

H. Dickinson. 

Honghton Mifl9in Company, 1915 

NE judges that what the public has been 
wanting has finally come out in the form 
of a collection of contemporary plays 
by Professor Thomas H. Dickinson. 
From the rapidity and the character of 
the sale of this book, the public has de- 
sired it principally from the economic 
point of view; twenty representative plays by twenty 
of the leading dramatists of the present day for two 
dollars and seventy-five cents is an offer never before 
made in the field of modem dramatic literature. 
What is most gratifying about the issuance of such 
a book is that it is in answer to an insistent call for 
plays in bulk and at a low price, a certain sign that 
the vogue of the published play is well established, 
that the drama as a social document and a high form 
of art is recognized. 

By the character of the sale and certain aspects 
of the book, there are further reasons for gratifica- 
tion in the probability of its attracting the attention 
of the ** average man.'' Professor Dickinson has 
worked out a basis of choice which has included a 
good many plays of frequent production in this coun- 
try, thus giving the collection something of a popu- 
lar tone. These plays are so well known to the 
serious student of the stage that it is quite probable 

527 



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528 CONTEMPORARY DRAMATISTS 

that the real market for Contemporary Dramatists 
will be the general theater-goer who goes for amnse- 
ment only but who is beginning to acquire the habit 
of reading dramatic literature. This conjecture 
seems to be further supported by minor aspects of 
the book. The appendix was evidently designed for 
strangers to the field, since it consists of brief biog- 
raphies of the authors, notes on the production of 
the plays, and two reading lists, one on the authors 
and another on contemporary drama in general To 
devotees of the drama this material is well-known, 
but for the purpose of enlisting new followers, it 
contributes to the recruiting possibilities of the col- 
lection. 

To those already thoroughly acquainted with the 
plays of the present day, the interest of this com- 
pilation lies chiefly in the editor's choice. The num- 
ber of plays, twenty, which he says is a matter of 
principle rather than policy, necessarily infers a 
very definite and strict basis of selection, because 
the purpose is wide. The primary object of such 
a coUection, he says in the Introduction, is to ** pro- 
vide within a reasonable compass a series of plays 
which will as nearly as possible represent the abid- 
ing achievements of the present dramatic era.'' 
This era he designates by the distinct movement in 
the drama, beginning in the last generation and con- 
tinuing through the present ; the movement, he feels, 
has a pronounced unity, its ear-marks remaining 
consistent from its inception in the work of Ibsen. 
He defines ** contemporary" as used in the title to 
cover the plays of this period. The characteristics 
of this era of Ibsen are two : first, the ** adherence to 
the naturalistic tendency mellowed to the motives 
of the humanities, and second, the tendency toward 
the reorganization of the theater to a nearer align- 



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CONTEMPORARY DRAMATISTS 529 

ment to the social terms of the age." These are his 
two bases of selection and it is obvious that they 
make it quite possible to overlook some of the prob- 
lems of date. For example, they exclude plays now 
being written of the type of Moliere and they include 
plays written a generation ago belonging to the 
present period; thus Bostand is not represented and 
Moody and Wilde are. The one notable exclusion is 
that of Ibsen himself; for this action. Professor 
Dickinson reasons that Ibsen had to pay the price of 
being the originator of a movement by ** ageing" 
more rapidly than his followers, that he cannot be 
represented by a single play, and lastly, that hia 
omission really emphasizes him. Aside from per- 
sonal policies, the editor was restricted in his choice 
by limitations of translations, terms of holders of 
copyrights and the specifications of authors, as in 
the case of Maeterlinck, who limited the editor to 
four of his plays. Taking the plays by and large, 
the choice appears to be commendable. Any amount 
of quibbling may be indulged in as to details of 
inclusion and exclusion, but since the fimction of 
the book pretends to be a popular or missionary one, 
it should suffice if it contains the lasting elements 
of modem drama. 

One adverse criticism comes to mind. This is the 
matter of scene description, character sketching and 
stage business. Except in the cases of Barker, Shaw, 
Hauptmann, and Sudermann, there is little of this 
element of dramatic literature in the forms of the 
plays as they are published* Just as it is not pos- 
sible to make a modem practical stage play thor- 
oughly intelligible to an audience without scenic 
equipment, so it is not possible to make a play under- 
standable to a reader without parenthetical expla- 
nations and descriptions. The fundamental reason 



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530 CONTEMPORARY DRAMATISTS 

for the awkward necessity of inserting these is the 
infirmity of the language. Isn't it Shaw who says 
that there are fifty ways of saying Yes and five hun- 
dred of saying No, but only one way of writing them 
downf That is the difficulty to be overcome, and 
one cannot but take the Shavian point of view in that 
this difficulty must be overcome before the presenta- 
tion of plays through the literary medium becomes 
an art. To give the reader the stage sense, the * * illu- 
sion of life,** all that is supplied by the scenery, the 
costumes and the action should be indicated by the 
published play. The fault is not that alone of Con- 
temporary Dramatists, but of most published plays. 
Is it not high time that playwrights realize the ad- 
vantages of thus preserving the artistic elements of 
their work in their entirety? 

AiiFBED K. Eddy. 



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THE SHAKESPEAEE TEKCENTENARY 

DEVSLOPMEKTS OF THB PIAK FOB A KATION-WIDS 
CBLEBBATION 

I HE propaganda of the Drama Leagae of 
America in the interest of a nation-wide 
celebration of the Shakespeare Tercen- 
tenary are already bearing rich fmit, 
and give promise of developments of 
great magnitude and significance. There 
has been a heavy demand for copies of 
its first Bnlletin, and throngh the agency of various 
organizations — ^notably the National Federation of 
Women's Clnbs — ^many thousands have been cir- 
culated. A large number of cities and towns, schools 
and school systems, colleges and universities, recrea- 
tional, dramatic, and musical organizations, women's 
dubs, study and lecture organizations have resolved 
to hold celebrations; and the increasing number of 
inquiries and requests for help and suggestion point 
to a culmination of interest and activity in the Fall, 
when the work of the new season begins. 

Among the conferences still to be held at which 
the celebration will be discussed are those of the 
National Education Association at Oakland, and of 
the League of Cities, which is to be held in San 
Francisco on the 18th to 20th of August, with ses- 
sions at the Panama-Pacific Exposition, at Oakland, 
and at Berkeley. After these have taken place, the 
Drama League will issue a second Bulletin indi- 
cating the various types of celebration proposed, 
and giving the information so far gathered, which 

531 



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532 THE SHAKESPEARE TERCENTENARY 

will serve to answer the kinds of inquiries that 
may be expected in increasing number from now on. 
Meanwhile it may be well to publish in The Dbama 
some account of the activities already initiated and 
the directions in which the movement is progressing. 

Little need be said at present concerning the pos- 
sibilities for schools and colleges, because for- 
tunately Dr. Claxton, the United States Commis- 
sioner of Education, has promised to issue and to 
circulate among the schools and colleges of the coun- 
try a Bulletin (for which the material is in an ad- 
vanced state of preparation) which will set forth in 
detail the various kinds of celebrations which have 
been suggested for these educational institutions, 
ranging from the simplest contributions possible for 
the elementary school up to the richer forms within 
the scope of high schools, normal schools and col- 
leges. These will be definite and specific, with full 
references, and a bibliography which is being pre- 
pared in the Library of Congress. 

The good offices of the Library of Congress will 
extend further — ^indeed, have already extended fur- 
ther. There will be a more extensive bibliog- 
raphy (annotated) to aid a still larger circle — ^in- 
cluding students of Shakespeare and those clubs and 
institutions which may be arranging special courses 
of study or special Shakespeare programs. 

In this connection the part to be played by 
libraries (to which many librarians are much alive) 
may be touched upon. Many will make a special 
feature of Shakespeare shelves and sections, provid- 
ing in particular for the use of schools the collections 
recommended in the bibliographies referred to. 
Some (e. g., Boston) will have courses of lectures by 
specialists ; some, exhibits of Shakespereana. Hap- 
pily, the American Library Association will use its 



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THE SHAKESPEARE TERCENTENARY 533 

strong arm in urging librarians to make the most of 
the opportunity, and in helping them with informa- 
tion and suggestion. 

Community celebrations wiU assume various forms 
— outdoor and indoor. Naturally the larger type of 
outdoor celebration, permitting of great audiences^ 
finds greatest favor; but the problem of what should 
be presented in order to reach audiences of ten thou- 
sand and over is perplexing. St. Louis is facing this 
problem in the form of a proposal (referred to in 
the first Bulletin of the Drama League) to produce 
one of Shakespeare's plays in a festival framework. 
Other cities express a preference for some form of 
masque or pageant; and steps have been taken to 
make a Shakespeare Festival Masque available. It 
will be written by Mr. Percy MacKaye, and will be 
published in October by Doubleday, Page & Co. as 
the initial volume of a new Drama League Pageant 
Series. 

There will be other types of community festival, 
including the Folk-fSte, with procession, folk-dance 
and merry-making, — sometimes taking the form of 
an old English May Festival Bealizing the im- 
portant part which folk-dancing should play, some 
cities have sent teachers to the School of English 
Folk-Dance at Eliot, Maine, to equip themselves for 
the task of teaching the dances to large numbers in 
their cities. 

This reference to the folk-dances, and the folk- 
songs used with them, leads naturally to a statement 
of what is being done to render the necessary music 
available. All the principal publishing houses are 
making provision for the publication of such music 
as well as other forms of music suitable for all kinds 
of Shakespearean festival programs, — some of them 
having agreed to issue in cheap form the dances, 



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534 THE SHAKESPEARE TERCENTENARY 

songs, and singing-games most suitable for schools. 
Moreover, a large number of these will be available 
for the victrola. There is no need to emphasize the 
wide range of choice in musical settings of Shake- 
spearean songs, for the single voice, for small groups 
and for choruses. 

But other plans for distinctively musical festivals 
must be mentioned. Efforts are being made to in- 
duce the symphony orchestras to give special Shake- 
speare festival concerts at the close of the season, 
which will be about the date of Shakespeare's birth- 
and death day (April 23). In some cases (e. g., St 
Louis) plans have already been made. They have 
been facilitated by the preparation in the Library of 
Congress by Mr. 0. G. Sonnec^, head of the Music 
Division, of a list of orchestral compositions in- 
spired by Shakespeare, a copy of which may be ob- 
tained on application to the Drama League. Mr. 
Sonneck will also supply a list of the operas in the 
modem repertory which are Shakespearean in 
theme, so that the opera companies may be induced 
to give special festival performances, and a list of 
choral works, so that choral societies may be aided 
in the selection of a festival work for their spring 
concerts. 

It is also certain that lectures, lecture recitals and 
concerts of the music of Shakespeare's time will be 
offered by competent interpreters. The Drama 
League has some information about these, and the 
offerings which will be made, and will be glad to pass 
on such information to those who apply for it, if 
the particular needs are clearly specified. 

The general policy advocated by the Drama 
League is that of utilizing for celebration purposes 
opportunities and resources already available. Thus 
customary anniversary celebrations, home weeks, 



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TEE SHAKESPEARE TERCENTENARY 535 

fairs, school and college commencements^ annual 
performances of dramatic dabs and vocal and instru- 
mental organizations, may all be converted into fes- 
tival occasions. Sindlarly school or college ordies- 
tras, g^ee dubs, mandolin dubs may all focus their 
attention upon Shakespearean music (the happiest 
adaptations of old music for mandolins, guitars, and 
the like might be, and probably will be, made). 

Perhaps the very simplest form of celebration pos- 
sible is that of a tree-planting, with appropriate 
ceremonies. This was suggested and is being pro- 
moted by the Shakespeare dub of Toledo, the direc- 
tor of which, Mrs. Robert Carlton Morris, 2648 
Elrkwood Lane, Toledo, 0., will be glad to furnish 
information and advice in the matter. The tree 
might be in a public park or in a school yard or 
garden, and beside it (as another suggestion runs) 
a memorial bench might be placed. 

Allied to this is the proposal to arrange for the 
making of an old English garden, in which as many 
as possible of the flowers mentioned in Shakespeare's 
plays shall be grown. This will be done, thanks to 
the ready response of the director, Dr. (Jeorge C. 
Moore, in the Missouri Botanical Gardens (Shaw's 
Oardens) , in St. Louis ; and there is no reason why it 
should not be done in public parks and other insti- 
tutions. Some of the large garden clubs have al- 
ready expressed an interest and a desire to co- 
operate. Catalogues or lists of the flowers, with 
citations of the passages from the plays, may easily 
be prepared with the aid of library material 

Li promoting this movement, through its various 
centers, the Drama League is acting only as an ini- 
tiatory and co-ordinating agency. In doing so it na- 
turally gathers a good deal of information, and is 
frequently appealed to for help and suggestion. It 



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536 THE SHAKESPEARE TERCENTENARY 

will therefore try to be of all possible service as a 
bureau of information or clearing house. Many 
meetings of its centers in the interest of celebra^ 
tionSy or meetings arranged by them, will be held 
in the Fall, and the President of the League has 
accepted numerous invitations to speak on the sub- 
ject. A national committee is being formed, and 
its personnel will be announced when it has been 
finally completed. Then action will be taken, it is 
expected, in regard to the question of a national 
memorial of some sort. Some suggestions as to 
the form which it should take — a theater, a repertory 
company, a school of acting and dramatic art, an 
annual prize for a play, a lectureship, a Shakespeare 
society — ^have already been made, and a discussion 
of the matter is invited. 

Pebcival Chttbb. 



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RECENT MAGAZINE AETICLES ON THE 
DRAMA. 

Obebk Tragedies in C. C. N. Y. Stadium; The The- 
atre, June. 

The Stbatfobd-On-Avon Playbes; The Theatre, 
June. 

Playino Greek Tragedy — Margaret Anglin; 
Hearst's, June. 

The Workmanship of ^^A Midsummer Night's 
Dream'' — Sir A.Qniller-Couch; The North Ameri- 
can Review, June. 

Picking Up Stage Wisdom — ^KatherineGrey; Ameri- 
can, July. 

Lavinia and the Lion (Androoles and the Lion) ; 
Cosmopolitan, July. 

The Revival op Greek Tragedy in America — ^Har- 
rison Smith; Bookman, Jnne. 

A Classic For Our Day (The Trojan Women) ; Lit- 
erary Digest, June 26th. 

The New Spirit op the French Stage ; Literary Di- 
gest, Jnne 26th. 

The Cherry Orchard — G^ertrude Besse King; The 
New Bepnblic, June 26th. 



537 



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A SELECTIVE LIST OF ESSAYS AND BOOKS 
ABOUT THE THEATRE PUBLISHED DUR- 
ING THE SECOND QUARTER OF 1915. 

Compiled by Frank Chouteau Brown. 

The purpose or particular value of the vohune 
listed is suggested by the numerals preceding each 
title, thus: (1) Technique; (2) Biography; (3) His- 
torical Treatise; (4) Criticism of Drama; (5) Criti- 
cal Dramatic Records; (6) Essays; (7) Drama 
Study; (8) Technical; (9) Sociological; (10) Theatre 
of Future. 

BOOKS. 

Clabk^ Babbett H. (American). 

4. 6. 7. The British and American Drama of 

Today Holt $1.50 net 

Clabke, Helen A. and Chablotte A. Pobteb 

(Americans). 
7. Shakespeare Study Programs ; the Histories 

Badger $1.00 net 
Hamon, a. (English). 
2. Bernard Shaw, the XXth Century Moliere 

Allen & Unwin, Ltd. 7s6d 

Lewisohn, LuDwiG (German). 

4. 6. 7. The Modem Drama 

Kennerley $1.50 net 
Owen, Habold (English). 
2. Commonsense About the Shaw 

Allen & Unwin, Ltd. 2s6d 

538 



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SELECTIVE LIST OF PLATS 539 

PoBTBB, Charlotte A. and Helen A. Clabke 

(Americans). 
7. Shakespeare Study Programs ; the Histories 

Badger $1.00 net 
Bhts, EiBNEST (English). 

2. Babindranath Tagore Macmillan $1.25 net 

BoBiNsoN, Lennox (Irish). 

2. Robert Emmet Maunsel $ 

BoT, Basanta Koomab (India). 

2. Babindranath Tagore: The Man and His 

Poetry Dodd Mead $1.25 net 

Stubois, Gbanvillb Fobbes (American). 

4. 6. The Influence of the Drama 

French $1.00 net 



A SELECTED LIST OF PLAYS PUBLISHED 
DUBING THE SECOND QUABTEB OF 1915. 

Compiled by Frank Chouteau Brown. 

The same method of indicating the character of 
publications as has been used for the preceding Selec. 
tive Lists issued by the Drama League of America 
is continued for the titles that follow: (*) Plays 
professionally acted in English; (1) Bepresentative 
modem plays for technical study and reading; (2) 
Plays typical of the author's methods; (3) Bepre- 
sentative modem plays available for younger read- 
ers; (4) Plays possible for advanced amateur use; 
(5) Simple plays for amateur use; (6) Notable mod- 
em plays; (7) Notable modem poetic plays; (8) 
Closet or literary dramas; (9) Children's plays. 



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540 SELECTIVE LIST OF PLATS 

PLAYS. 

Akdbstev, Lsonid (Bnssian). 

(trans, by Thomas Seltzer.) 

Love of One's Neighbor. 

A. & C. Boni, New York $0.35 net 

The Sorrows of Belgium Macmillan $1.25 net 

Bbnavente, Jacinto (Spanish). 

The Smile of Mona Lisa Badger $.75 net 

BoYD^ Jaoeson (American). 

The Unveiling Putnam $1.25 net 

Bbaokett, Chables William (American). 

Jocelyn Badger $1.00 net 

DoNNAY, Matjbioe (Preuch). 

(Introduction by Barrett H. Clark.) 
2. Lovers Kennerley $1.50 net 

The Free Woman. 

They. 
Ellis, Mbs. Havelock (American). 

Love in Danger Houghton Mifflin $.75 net 

The Subjection of Kezia. 

The Pixy. 

The Mothers. 
France, Anatolb (French). 

The Man Who Married a Dumb Wife, 

Lane $0.75 net 
Gates, Elbanob (American). 

4. We Are Seven Arrow Pub. Co. $0,75 net 

Swat the Fly Arrow Pub. Co. $0.25 net 

Jokes, Henby Abthub (English). 

The Lie Doran $1.00 net 

"K. P.'* (Grand Duke Constantin), (Russian). 

The King of the Jews. Funk & Wagnalls $1.00 net 
LiNDSEY, William (American). 

Bed Wine of Bousillon, 

Houghton, Mifflin $1.00 net 



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SELECTIVE LIST OF PLAYS 541 

LuTKBNHAUs, Akka K. (American). 

9. Plays for School Children Century $1.50 net 

Macsat^ Cokstanob D'Aboy (American). 

9. Plays of the Pioneers Harpers $1.00 net 

The Pioneers. 

The Fountain of Yonth. 

May Day. 

The Vanishing Bace. 

The Passing of Hiawatha. 

Dame Creel o' Portland Town. 
MiTBBAY, Prop. Oilbebt (Translator) (English). 

The Alcestis of Euripides, 

Oxford University Press $0.75 net 
Sabdou, Viotobibn (French). 
2. Patrie (Drama League Series) , 

Doubleday, Page & Co. $0.75 net 
Vbbhabben, EiniiB (Belgian). 
7. The Dawn (Les Aubes ) , 

Small, Maynard & Co. $1.00 net 
TTpwabd, Allbn (American). 

Paradise Found, or the Superhuman Found 

Out Houghton, Miffln $1.25 net 



8TATBMENT OF THB OWNERSHIP, MANAGEMENT. CIRCULATION, 
ETC, REQUIRED BY THE ACT OF AUGUST 24. 1912 

Of The Drama, published quarterly at Chicago, ni^ for April 1. 1914. 

Bdltor — ^Theodore Ballon Hinckley, 6018 Jackson Park Blvd. 

Managing Editor — Theodore Balloo Hinckley. 0018 Jackson Park Blvd. 

Business Manager — ^Theodore Ballon Hinckley, 0018 Jackson Park Blvd. 

Publisher — ^Drama League of America. 

Owners (if a corporation, give its name and the names and addresses of 
stockholders holding 1 per cent or more of total amount of stock. If not a 
corporation, give names and addresses of Individual owners) : Drama League 
of America. Incorporated not for profit No stockholders. President, I>r. 
Richard Burton« Minneapolis; First Vice-President, Mrs. A. Starr Best, 
Chicago; Treasurer, Wm. T. Abbott, Chicago. 

Known bondholders, mortgagees, and other security holders, holding 1 
per cent or more of total amount of bonds, mortgages, or other securities: 
There are none. 

THEODORE B. HINCKLEY. 

Sworn to and subscribed before me this 6th day of April, 1015. 

[SEAL] JOHN J. PHELAN. 

(My commission ezpires September, 1018) 



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)RAMA 

of Dramatic Literature 

)er, 1915 



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THE DRAMA 

A Quarterly Review, of Dramatic Literature 
Editor, THEODORE BALLOU HINCKLEY 

Advisory and Contributing Elditors 

BRANDER MATTHEWS, Columbia University. 

THOMAS H. DICKINSON, University of Wisconsin. 

NATHANIEL W. STEPHENSON, CoUege of Chacies- 
ton. 

GEORGE P. BAKER, Harvard University. 

RICHARD BURTON, University of Minnesota. 

STARK YOUNG, University of Texas. 

S. H. CLARK, University of Chicago. 

BENEDICT PAPOT, Chautauqua Institution. 

PubUshed by 

The Drama League of America 

736 Marquette Building 

Chicago 

75c A Number $3.00 A Year 

Copyright, 1014, by Drama League of America 

Bntered bb second-class matter February 25, 1911, at the postoAoe at 
Chicago, lUioois, under the Act of March 8. 1879. 



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NOVEMBER CONTRIBUTORS. 

Edwin Arlington Robinson is the author of three 
books of verse, The Children of the Night, Captain 
Craig, and The Town Down the River. Of plays he 
has written two which are published, Va^ Zorn and 
The Porcupine; they are in prose. The poem in the 
current number is Mr. Robinson's first contribution 
to The Dbama. 

Arthur Pollock has been contributing to the mag- 
azines on subjects pertinent to the theatre for the 
last two years. Readers of The Dbama will remem- 
ber him by his two papers, Illumination and the 
Drama and The Evolution of the Actor. Mr. Pol- 
lock was bom in Brooklyn; he did his college work 
at Cornell and Columbia. 

Charlotte Porter, whose previous contributions to 
this magazine have been Civic Theatres and a series 
of articles entitled. The New Stage Art, is favorably 
known as poet and as editor. Her authority regard- 
ing Shakespeare rests upon a work which occupied 
nine years, the editing of the First Folio Edition of 
the plays, in which a great step to an accurate 
knowledge of Shakespeare's staging was taken by 
reproducing the original stage-directions and point- 
ing out late interpolations. For this work Maeter- 
linck expressed to Miss Porter profound gratitude. 

Julius Brouta, editor and litterateur, was bom 
in Brussels and spent his college years in Luxem- 
burg and at Louvain, where he took the degree of 
Ph.D. in 1888. After extensive travel on the Con- 
tinent, he settled in Spain as a translator into many 
languages of plays, and as a magazine contributor. 
Dr. Brouta is the scientific editor of the Diario de 
Barcelona and the author of dramas, poems, and his- 
torical and philosophical pamphlets. 



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NOVEMBER CONTRIBUTORS 

* * The States ' ' may be proud of its earnest and able 
gronp of younger men who are bending their efforts 
to the discussion of the drama in all its phases. One 
of these is represented in this number, Mr. Charlton 
Andrews. Mr. Andrews is the author of The Drama 
Today which appeared a few years ago, of His Maj- 
esty the Pool, and of the very recent Technique of 
Play Writing, which will be reviewed in the Feb- 
ruary Dbama. 

Miss Grace Humphrey a few years ago left 
Springfield, HI., to become an enthusiastic member 
of the ** lower New York'* colony of writers and art- 
ists in other fields. She is much interested in the 
many newer forms of drama production, and has 
made a special study of Miss Bentley's work in the 
dance. 

Mr. Tagore is so well known to readers of The 
Dbama that discussion is superfluous. The maga- 
zine congratulates itself and its readers upon the 
opportunity afforded by the present article to under- 
stand more fully the principles underlying the writ- 
ing of his dramas and the general canons of dra- 
matic art. 

The work of Jacinto Benavente is discussed in the 
article by Dr. Bronta. 

Aliiee C. D. Riley, of Evanston, Illinois, has been 
known in the field of children's songs for the past 
twenty years, in collaboration with the composer, 
Mrs. Jessie L. Gaynor. The Riley-Gaynor kinder- 
garten songs, such as Songs of the Child World, 
tiie ** Playtime Songs,'' and children's operas, such 
as The House That Jack BuUt, have long been 
popular. Many single songs, such as ^^The Slumber 
Boat" and *'The Gingerbread Man," have made 
friends even across the water. 



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THE DRAMA 

Number 20 NOVEMBER 1915 



CONTENTS 

BEN JONSON ENTERTAINS A MAN FBOM 
STRATFORD, by Edmn Arlington Robinson 543 

SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST, by Ju- 
lius Brouta 555 

THE BONDS OF INTEREST, a Puppet Play, 
by Jacinto Benavente 568 

THE PORTMANTEAU THEATRE, by Grace 
Humphrey 644 

THE EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR (H The 
Rise of the Mooebk Acxob), by Arthur 
PoUock '". 651 

THE STAGE, by Rabindranath Tagore 664 

THE CASE OF AMERICAN DRAMA, a re- 
view by Charlton Andrews 669 

PLAYING HAMLET AS SHAKESPEARE 
STAGED IT. n 675 

THE MODERN STAGE SOCIETY, by Grace 
Humphrey 690 

THE LOVER'S GARDEN, a Shakespeare 
Flower Masque, by Alice C. D. Riley 695 

THE PRINTED PLAY, notes on recent pub- 
lications, hj A.K. E 715 

OF THE NEW BOOKS 729 

RECENT MAGAZINE ARTICLES ON THE 
DRAMA 734 



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Among the many features of interest in the Fd>ruary nwnber 
of The Drama will be a recent war play which has aroused pro- 
found discussion in Russia. The author has already become 
deservedly esteemed by discriminating American readers throu^^ 
his novels. As none of his dramas, in which he is a recognized 
master at home, has hitherto been published m this country, the 
readers of The Drama will weloHne the appearance of diis 
significant play. Mr. Thomas Seltzer, whose excellent critical 
work in connection with Andreyev will be remembered, is making 
the translation and the accompanying study of die playwrifi^t*s 
place in dramatic literature. 

Many other articles in die same number will include Mr. 
Arvold's own story of what, socially speaking, is the most import- 
ant development in the drama world of recent years. The Litde 
CDuntry Theatre out at Fargo, North Dakota; A Study of Eugene 
Walter^ an American Dramatic Realist by Francis Lamont Peirce; 
and a stimulating and amusing treatment of The Folljf of Theatrical 
Advertising by Annie Nathan Meyer. 



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THE DRAMA 

A Quarterljf Reviei» of Dramatic Liit^aiurt 



No. 20 November 1915 




BEN JONSON ENTERTAINS A MAN 
FROM STRATFORD 

]OU are a friend then, as I make it out, 
I Of our man Shakeq;>eare, who alone of ua 
I Will put an ass's head in Fairyland 
As he would add a shilling to more shillings^ 
All most harmonious, — and out of his 
Miraculous inviolable increase 
Fills Ilion, Rome, or any town you like 
Of olden time with timeless Englishmen; 
And I must wonder what you think of him— 
All you down there where your small Avon flows 
By Stratford, and where you*re an Alderman. 
Some, for a guess, would have him riding back 
To be a farrier there, or say a dyer; 
Or maybe one of your supreme surveyors; 
Or like enough the wizard of all tanners. 
Not 3rou — no fear of that; for I discern 
In you a kindling of the flame that save s 
The nimble element, the true phlogiston; 
1 see it, and was told of it, moreover. 
By our discriminate friend himself, no other. 
Had you been one of the sad average. 
As he would have it,-^-meaning, as I take it. 
The sinew and the solvent of our Island, 
You*d not be bu3ring beer for this Terpander*s 
Approved and estimated friend Ben Jonson; 
He*d never foist it as a part of his 
Contingent entertainment of a townsman 
While he goes off rehearsing, as he must. 
If he shall ever be the Duke of Stratford; 



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And my words are no shadow on your town — 
Far from it; for one town's as like another 
As all are unlike London. Oh, he knows it, — 
And there's the Stratford in him; he denies it. 
And there's the Shakeq;>eare in him. So, God 

help him. 
I tell him he needs Greek; but neither God 
Nor Greek will help him. Nothing will help 

that man. 
You see the fates have given him so much. 
He must have all or perish, — or look out 
Of London, where he sees too many lords; 
They're part of half what ails him: I suppose 
There's nothing fouler down among the demons 
Than what it is he feels when he remembers 
The dust and sweat and ointment of his calling 
With his lords looking on and laughing at him. 
King as he is, he can't be king de facio^ 
And that's as well, because he wouldn't like it; 
He'd frame a lower rating of men then 
Than he has now; and after that would come 
An abdication or an apoplexy. 
He can't be king, not even king of Stratford, — 
Though half the world, if not me whole of it. 
May crown him with a crown that fits no king 
Save Lord Apollo's homesick emissary; 
Not there on Avon, or on any stream 
Where Naiads and their white arms are no more. 
Shall he find home again. It's all too bad. 
But there's a comfort, for he'll have that House— 
The best you ever saw; and he'll be there 
Anon, as you're an Alderman. Good God I 
He makes me lie awake o' nights and laufi^ 

And you have known him from his origin. 
You tell me; and a most uncommon urchin 
He must have been to the few seeing one s 
A trifle terrifsring, 1 dare say. 
Discovering a world with his man's eyes. 



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Quite as another lad might see some finches, 

If he looked hard and had an eye for nature. 

But this one had his eyes and their foretelling. 

And he had you to fare with, and what else? 

He must have had a father and a mother — 

In fact Fve heard him say so— and a dog. 

As a boy should, I venture; and the dog. 

Most likely, was the only man who knew him. 

A dog, for all I know, is what he needs 

As much as ansrthing right here today. 

To counsel him about his disillusions. 

Old aches, and parturitions of what's coming, — 

A dog of orders, an emeritus. 

To ¥fag his tail at him when he comes home. 

And then to put his paws up on his knees 

And say, **For God*s sake, what's it all about?** 

I don*t know whether he needs a dog or not — 

Or what he needs. I tell him he needs Greek; 

rU talk of rules and Aristotle with him. 

And if his tongue*s at home he*ll say to that, 

"I have your word that Aristotle knows. 

And you mine that I don*t know Aristotle.** 

He*s all at odds with all the unities, 

And'what*s yet worse, it doesn*t seem to matter; 

He treads along through Time*s old wilderness 

As if the tramp of all the centuries 

Had left no roads — and there are none, for him; 

He xloesn*t see them, even with those eyes, — 

And that*s a pity, or I say it is. 

Accordingly we have him as we have him— 

Going his way, the way that he goes best, 

A pleasant animal with no great noise 

Or nonsense anjrwhere to set him off — 

Save only divers and inclement devils 

Have made of late his heart their dwelling-place. 

A flame half ready to fly out sometimes 

At some annoyance may be fanned up in him, 

But'soon it falls, and when it falls goes out; 



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546 



BEN JONSON ENTERTAINS 



He knows how little room there is in there 
For crude and futile animosities. 
And how much for the joy of being whole. 
And how much for long sorrow and old pain* 
On our side there are some who may be given 
To grow old wondering what he thhiks of us. 
And some above us, who are, in his eyes. 
Above himself ,—- and that's quite ri^t and 

English. 
Yet here we nnile, or disappoint the gods 
Who made it 'so: the gods have alwajrs eyes 
To see men scratch; and they see one down here 
Who itches, manor-bitten to the bone. 
Albeit he knows himself — yes, yes, he knows— 
The lord of more than England and of more 
Than all the seas of England in all time 
Shall ever wash. D*yc wonder that I laui^> 
He sees me, and he doesn't seem to care; 
And why the devil should he> I can*t tell you. 

rU meet him out alone of a bri^t Sunday, 
Trim, rather spruce, and quite the gentleman. 
"What ho, my lordT* say L He doesn't hear me. 
Wherefore I have to pause and look at him; 
He's not enormous, but one looks at him. 
A little on the round, if you insist. 
For now, God save the mark, he's growing old; 
He's five and forty, and to hear him talk 
These days you'd call him eighty; then you'd add 
More years to that. He's old enough to be 
The father of a world, and so he is. 
"Ben, you're a scholar, what's the time of day>** 
SajTS he; and there shines out of him again 
That aged light which has no age or station- 
Hie mystery that's his — a mischievous 
Half-mad serenity that laughs at fame 
For being won so easy, and at friends 
Who laugh at him for what he wants the most. 
And for his dukedom down in Warwickshire, — 



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A MAN FROM STRATFORD 



547 



By which you see we*re all a little jealous. 
Poor Greene I 1 fear the color of his name 
Was even as that of his ascending soul; 
And he was one where there are many others*— - 
Some scrivening to the end against theii* fate. 
Their puppets all in ink and all to die there; 
And some with hands that once would shade an 

eye 
That scanned Euripides and Aeschylus 
Will reach by this time for a pot-house mop 
To slush their first and last of rosralties. 
Poor devils I and they all play to his hand; 
For so it was in Athens and old Rome. 
But that*s not here or there; Tve wandered off. 
Greene does it» or Tm carefuL Where's that boy > 

Yes, he*ll go back to Stratford. And we*ll miss 

him? 
Dear sir, there*ll be no London here without him. 
We*ll all be riding, one of these fine days, 
Down there to see him — and his wife won't like 

us; ^ 

And then we*ll think of what he never said 
Of women — ^which, if taken all in all 
With what he did say, would buy many horses. 
Though nowadajTS he*s not so much for women: 
'*So few of them,** he says, **are worth the 

guessing.** 
But there*s a worm at work when he sajrs that. 
And while he says it one feels in the air 
A deal of circumambient hocus-pocus; 
They*ve had him dancing till his toes were tender. 
And he can feel *em now, come chilly rains. 
There's no long cry for going into it. 
However, and we don't know much about it. 
The Fitton thing was worst of all, 1 fancy; 
And you in Stratford, like most here in London, 
Have more now in the Sormets than you paid for; 
He's put her there with all her poison on. 



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I 



To make a singing fiction of a shadow 
That's in his life a fact, and always will be. 
But she's no care of ours, thou^^ Tune, I fear. 
Will have a more reverberant ado 
About her than about another one 
Who seems to have decoyed him, married him. 
And sent him scuttling on his way to London, — 
With much already learned, and more to learn. 
And more to follow. Lordl how I see him now. 
Pretending, maybe trying, to be like us. 
Whatever he may have meant, we never had him; 
He failed us, or escaped, or what you will, — 
And there was that about him (God knows 

what, — 
We*d flayed another had he tried it on us) 
That made as many of us as had wits 
More fond of all bis easy distances 
Than one another's noise and clap-your-shoulder. 
But think you not, my friend, he'd never talkl 
Talk? He was eldritch at it; and we listened — 
Thereby acquiring much we knew before 
About ourselves, and hitherto had held 
Irrelevant, or not prime to the purpose. 
And there were some, of course, and there be 

now. 
Disordered and reduced amazedly 
To resignation by the m3r8tic seal 
Of young finality the gods had laid 
On eveiy thing that made him a young demon; 
And one or two shot looks at him already 
As he had been their executioner; 
And once or twice he was, not knowing it, — 
Or knowing, being sorry for poor clay 
And sa3ring nothing. . . Yet, for all his engines. 
You'll meet a thousand of an afternoon 
Who strut and sun themselves and see around 'em 
A world made out of more that has a reason 
Than his, I swear, that he sees here to-day; 
Though he may scarcely give a Fool an exit 



I 



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A MAN FROM STRATFOFtD 



549 



But we see how he sees in everything 
A law that, given we flout it once too often. 
Brings fire and iron down on our naked heads. 
To me it looks as if the power that made him. 
For fear of giving all things to one creature. 
Left out the first, — faith, innocence, illusion. 
Whatever *tis that keeps us out o* Bedlam, — 
And thereby, for his too consuming vision. 
Empowered him out of nature; thou^^ to see him. 
You'd never guess what's going on inside him. 
He'll break out someday like a keg of ale 
With too much' independent frenzy in it; 
And all for cellaring what he knows won't keep. 
And what he'd best forget — but that he can't. 
You'll have it, and have more than I'm foretelling; 
And there'll be such a roaring at the Globe 
As never stuimed the bleeding gladiators. 
He'll have to change the color of its hair 
A bit, for now he calls it Qeopatra* 
Black hair would never do for Cleopatra. 

But you and I are not yet two old woipen; 

And you're a man of office. What he does 

Is more to you than how it is he does it,— 

And that is what the Lord God's never told him; 

They work together, and the DevO helps *em; 

They do it of a morning, or if not. 

They do it of a night; in which event 

He's peevish of a morning. He seems old; 

He's not the proper stomach or the sleep— 

And they're two sovran agents to conserve him 

Against the fiery art that has no mercy 

But what's in that prodigious grand new House. 

I gather something happening in his boyhood 

Fulfilled him with a boy's determination 

To make all Stratford 'vrare of him. Well, well, 

I hope at last he'll have his joy of it. 

And all his pigs and sheep and bellowing beeves, 

And frogs and owls and unicorns, moreover. 



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550 



BEN JONSON ENTERTAINS 



Be less than hell to his attendant ears. 

Oh, past a doubt we'll all go down to see him. 

He may be wise. With London two days off, 
Down there some wind of heaven may yet revive 

him; 
But there's no quickening breath from an3n¥here 
Shall make of him again the poised young faim 
From Warwickshire, who*d made, it seems, 

already 
A legend of himself before I came 
To blink before the last of his first lightning. 
Whatever there be, they'll be no more of that; 
The coming on of his old monster Time 
Has made him a still man; and he has dreams 
Were fair to think on once, and all found hollow. 
He knovrs how much of what men paint than- 

selves 
Would blister in the light of what they are; 
He sees how much of what was great now shares 
An eminence transform^ and ordinary; 
He knows too much of what the world has hushed 
In others, to be loud now for himself; 
He knows now at what height low enemies 
May reach his heart, and high friends let him fall; 
But what not even such as he may know 
Bedevils him the worst: his lark may sing 
At heaven's gate how he will, and for as long 
As joy may listen, but he sees no gate. 
Save one whereat the spent clay waits a little 
Before the churchyard has it, and the worm. 
Not long ago, late in an afternoon, 
I came on him unseen down Lambeth way. 
And on my life I was afear'd of him I 
He gloomed and mumbled like a soul from 

Tophet, 
His hands behind him and his head bent solemn. 
**What is it now,** said I, — **another woman?** 
That made him sorry for me, and he smiled. 



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A MAN FROM STRATFORD 



*'No, Ben.'* he muted, 'it's Nothing. It's all 

Nothing. 
We come, we go; and when we're done, we're 

done; 
Spiders and flies — ^we're mostly one or t'other^— 
We come, we go; and when we're done, we're 

done." 
"By God, you sing that song as if you knew it!" 
Said 1, by way of cheering him; "What ails ye?" 
"I think I must have come down here to think," 
SajTS he to that, and pulls his little beard; 
"Your fly will serve as well as anybody. 
And what's his hour> He flies, and flies, and 

flies. 
And in his fly's mind has a brave appearance; 
And then your spider gets him in her net. 
And eats him out, and hangs him up to dry. 
That's Nature, the kind mother of us all. 
And then your slattern housemaid swings her 

broom. 
And where's your spider? And that's Nature, 

also. 
It's Nature, and it's Nothing. It's all Nothing. 
It's all a world where bugs and emperors 
Go singularly back to the same dust. 
Each to his time; and the old, ordered stars 
That sang together, Ben, will sing the same 
Old stave to-morrow." 

When he talks like that. 
There's nothing for a human man to do 
But lead him to some grateful nook like this 
Where we be now, and there to make him drink. 
He'll drink, for love of me, and then be sick; 
A sad sign alwajrs in a man of parts. 
And alwajTS very ominous. The great 
Should be as large in liquor as in love. 
And our great friend is not so large in either: 
One disaffects him, and the other fails him; 
Whatso he drinks that has an antic in it. 



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552 



BEN JONSON ENTERTAINS 



He*8 wondering what's to pay in his insides; 

And while his eyes are on the Cyprian 

He's fribbling all the time widi that damned 

House. 
But he's not of our time, or any time; 
He's of all time. He needs Greek, even at that,*— 
And a little braver manner with a shilling 
O' mornings for the more nefarious 
And out o* nights, who are to be forgotten; 
Though I'd assure ye — and I'm sashing this — 
The worthy, for a word, may have his breeches. 
We laugh here at his thrift, but after all 
It may be thrift that saves him from the devil; 
God gave it, anyhow, — and we'll suppose 
He knew the compound of his handiwork. 
To-day the clouds are with him, but anon 
He'll out of 'em enough to shake the Tree 
Of Life itself and bring down fruit unheard-of, — 
And, throwing in the bruised and whole together. 
Prepare a wine to make us drunk with wonder; 
And if he live, there'll be a sunset spell 
Thrown over him as over a glassed lake 
That yesterday was all a black wild water. 

God send he live to give us, if no more. 

What now's a-rampage in him, and exhibit. 

With a decent half-allegiance to the ages 

An earnest of at least a casual eye 

Turned once on what he owes to Gutenberg, 

And to the fealty of more centuries 

Then are as yet a picture in our vision. 

"There's time enough, — I'll do it when I'm old. 

And we're immortal men," he says to that; 

And then he says to me, "Ben, what's 'immortal' ? 

Think you by any force of ordination 

It may be nothing of a sort more noisy 

Than a small oblivion of component ashes 

That of a dream-addicted world was once 

A moving atomy much like your friend here>" 



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Nothinir will help diat man* To make him lani^ 
1 aaid then he ¥ras a mad mountdbank,— 
And by die Lord I nearer made him cry. 
1 could have eat an eft then, on my kneea» 
Tail claws, and all of him; for I had stung 
The King of men, who had no sting for me. 
And 1 had hurt him in his memories; 
And I say now, as I shall say again, 
1 love die man this side idolatiy. 

He*ll do it when he*s old, he sajrs. I wonder. 
He may not be so ancient as all diat: 
For sudi as he, die thing diat is to do 
'VnU do itself, — but diere*s a reckoning; 
The sessions that are now too much his own. 
The roiling inward of a stilled outside. 
The churning out of all diose blood-fed lines. 
The nights of many schemes and litde sleep. 
The full brain hammered hot widi too much 

diinking. 
The vexed heart over-worn widi too much 

aching,— 
This weary jangling of conjoined affairs 
Made out of elements that have no end. 
And all confused at once, I understand, 
is not what makes a man to live forever. 
O no, not nowl He*ll not be going now: 
There'll be time yet for God knows what 

explosions 
Before he goes. He*ll stay avrhile. Just wait: 
Just wait a year or two for Cleopatra, 
For she's to be a balsam and a comfort; 
And that's not all a jape of mine now, either. 
For granted once the old way of Apollo 
Sings in a man, he may then, if he's able. 
Strike unafraid whatever strings he will 
Upon the last and wildest of new lyres; 
Nor out of his new magic, though it hsrmn 
The shrieks of dimgeoned hell, shall he create 



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554 



BEN JONSON ENTERTAINS 



A mailnet0 or a gloom to Ant quite out 
A cleaving dayli^t, and a last great calm 
Triumphant over shipwreck and all storms. 
He might have given Aristotle creeps, 
But surely would have given him his koAarm. 

He'll not be going yet There's too much yet 
Unsung within die man. But when he goes» 
I'd stake ye coin o' the realm his only care 
For a phantom world he sounded and found 

wanting 
Will be a portion here, a portion diere. 
Of this or that thing or some other thing 
That has a patent and intrinsical 
Equivalence in those egregious shillings. 
And yet he knows, God help him I Tell me, now. 
If there was ever anjrthing let loose 
On earth by gods or devik heretofore 
Like this mad, careful, proud, indifferent Shake* 

speare! 
Where ¥ras it, if it ever ¥ras> By heaven, 
*Twas never yet in Rhodes or Pergamon— 
In Thdbes or Nineveh, a thing like this! 
No thing Vke this ¥ras ever out of England; 
And that he knows. I wonder if he cares. 
Pei^ps he does. • • O Lord, diat House in 

Stratford I 

— Edwin Aruncton Rminson 



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SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 

Jacinto Benavente is without doubt the greatest 
living Spanish dramatist — ^it may properly be said 
that he is one of the greatest in tiie world, if the 
quality and facile nature of his work be considered 
Up to the present date seventy-five of his plays have 
been published, all of which have been performed, 
and idl of which are received with favor every time 
they are revived. Benavente possesses an astonish- 
ing richness in style, for he writes indiscriminately 
in verse and prose, treating tragedy and comedy 
with the same master hand; the flexibility of his 
genius lends itself equally to the deepest tenderness 
and emotion, to the most cruel irony and incisive 
sarcasm, and to the greatest poetry. 

The reduced space at my disposal hardly permits 
of my entering into a detailed analysis of Bena- 
vente 's monumental achievement, and I must per- 
force limit myself in these short lines to a tracery 
of the characteristics which determine its outline 
and general physiognomy. 

Benavente was bom in Madrid the 12th of Au- 
gust, 1866. He was the son of a doctor, to whom, in 
the double character of savant and philanthropist, 
his fellow citizens erected a statue in Madrid's 
park, the Buen Retiro. Physically and mentally 
Benavente is a Gastilian. He belongs to that an- 
cient race of hidalgos bom in the rugged central 
table-land of the Iberian Peninsula, which imposed 
its hegemony first upon the warm regions situated 
upon the littoral, and afterwards upon the whole of 
Europe, employing its excess of vitality in discover- 

555 



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556 SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 

ing and partly in colonizing a new world beyond the 
ocean. The craneologist Betzins would classify 
Benavente as a dolicocephalic type of the most 
marked nature. His face is long and narrow, but 
the frontal development is enormous. One instinct- 
ively thinks of Cervantes or any one of those poet- 
soldiers or poet-monks of the great Spanish epoch, 
as we know them in the old engravings and paint- 
ings. It is a curious coincidence that the heisul of 
the Marquis of Spinola, in the famous picture of 
Velasquez entitled "The Surrender of Breda," 
might very well pass for a faithful likeness of Bena- 
vente. We observe the same forehead, immeasura- 
bly broadened by a complete baldness of the arch of 
the skull, the same nose audaciously arched and 
prominent, the same black and penetrating eyes, the 
same wide mouth with its narrow lips, the vague 
expression of which is neither sorrowfully compas- 
sionate nor mischievously sardonic, the same obsti- 
nate chin terminating in a grayish imperial, and 
the same slightly curved mustache. 

Benavente studied law at the University of Mad- 
rid, but he was not attracted by the subtleties of the 
Corpus Puris and read with preference philosophers 
and poets. As soon as his university studies were 
completed, he began to devote his attention to the 
native theatre as well as to the works of foreign 
dramatists both ancient and modem. He was not 
content, however, with acquiring only theoretical 
knowledge, but wished to master the practical 
side of the stage. He became an actor, and dur- 
ing several years was a member of one or other of 
those noma(Uc companies which travel from town to 
town with the car of Thespis. In this he merely 
followed, it may be said, in the footsteps of many 
authors who have been both writers and performers 



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SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 557 

of plays. Amongst them may be cited Shakespeare, 
Molidre, Anzengmber, Baimnnd, Tieck and Qoethe* 
Bven today Benavente likes to appear from time to 
time on the boards, and more than once has played 
the part of Crispin in Los Intereses Creados, that 
delightful harlequinade published today in Thb 
Drama. 

Benavente was in no haste to make himself known 
as a playwright, and although he did not wait, as 
did Echegaray, until his forty-fourth year before 
producing his first work, he was over thirty when 
his first theatrical production, Oente Conodda (Fa- 
miliar Faces) , was presented. This is a biting satire 
upon the customs of the upper classes. The piece 
was well received by the critics, and from the first 
established its author's fame upon a solid basis. It 
was generally agreed that the new author was a 
revelation and represented a substantial addition to 
the treasury of Spanish literature. The play intro- 
duced an unprecedented note, rich, spontaneous, and 
of a poetic realism, without false pathos and melo- 
dramatic effect; it was potent with philosophic 
flashes which searched out the most obscure comers 
of conscience. 

Avoiding excesses of artifice, Benevente aims at 
a simple structure, actions which are consequences 
of sentiments, education, milieu, and customs; nei- 
ther more nor less poetic charm than life itself 
affords, for to reduce it is unhealthy pessimism, and 
to pretend to augment it is a task both useless and 
deceptive. He carefully avoids what is called dra- 
matic conflict, complexity, intrigue, the so-called 
cumulative situation, scenic effect, and artificially 
sustained characters — ^which in reality are emptiness 
itself and dependent upon circumstances. He shuns 
an those el^nents which astonish and deceive and 



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558 SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 

are stimulants of childish cariosity, elements which, 
in defiance of trath, reach their highest grade of 
dismal completeness in the works of the French 
writer, Victorien Sardou« 

If the first work published by Benavente bears all 
the marks of maturity and is therefore difficult to 
distinguish from those which follow, this is doubt- 
less due to the fact that it was the fruit of a sus- 
tained preparation and self-criticism, such as was 
recommended by Horace in his Ars Poetica; it was 
merely the latest among a series of trials — ^the sur- 
vival of the fittest. 

For the rest, when I say that Genie Conocida 
placed Benavente in the first rank of Spanish play- 
wrights, I don't mean to say that he was accepted 
from the beginning by the acclamations of public 
enthusiasm. On the contrary, it might be said that 
the first effect — startling or shocking, if you will — 
was like that which would be produced on a child 
accustomed to a milk diet on being obliged to change 
it suddenly to that of Malaga wine — generoso, for 
example. 

In spite of what generally happens, it was profes- 
sional criticism which divined the advent of the new 
star and chanted his rising with fervor. The wealthy 
classes, those which in Madrid rule the considera- 
tions of actors, box office and authors, reserved their 
opinion. This silent opposition was not exactly to 
the satire of Benavente — ^indeed a collectivity may 
be with impunity attacked in the most censorious 
terms, for each individual believes that criticism is 
directed against everybody excepting himself — but 
the son of the aristocracy rebelled against the social 
and philosophical ideas of the author. 

Benavente is, in many respects, the Bernard Shaw 
of Spain. Like Shaw, he is a disciple of Ibsen; like 



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SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 559 

him, an iconodast, a reformer, a teiacher, a preacher, 
and his dialectics are hardly less efficient or his 
spirit less hrilUatit If Sha^ at first encountered 
opposition in an advanced England, it is not at all 
surprising that in, conservative Spain, the home of 
misoneism, Benavente should have had to contend 
with defeat In the first place, it must be taken into 
account that in general our public goes tp the thea- 
tre purely for pleasure, pour passer le temps, and 
not to think or to be taught. Those young ladies 
who go to see and be seen, ^ose gentlemen for whom 
the entr'actes and their visits to boxes or to the 
greenroom constitute the luminous points of the 
evening would open their eyes with stupefaction 
were they told that art is capable of making us bet- 
ter than we are, of elevating our moral nature, and 
arousing ideas and even sensations the existence of 
which we ourselves had hardly suspected. 

To those who counselled his modifying his meth- 
ods, thus endeavoring to bring himself more into 
line with the sentiments of the public, Benavente 
always answered with a smile of conviction : '^I am 
trying to educate the public, and cannot allow it to 
educate me. I am writing for the public, not as it 
is at present, but. as it will be when my object is 
achieved.*^ And little by little, slowly and surely 
the public began to change its attitude, educating its 
taste, and as a result becoming more refined,. until 
today Benavente *s work is greatly liked — although 
with certain opposition, for his concise and sub- 
stantial dialogue, his keen wit and his philosophical 
insight are sometimiss too profound for his audience. 
Benavente depicts the world of elegance, not in a 
parody, as generally is the case in the majority of 
modem plays, but as a palpable reality, and his 
mordant observations are frequently of such a char- 



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660 SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 

aoter as to make a great part of his audience most 
uneasy, for there are attitudes and postures in whidi 
nobody likes to be photographed. 

Benavente, above all, is a serious writer, without 
any parade of bad taste, with no trace of crudeness, 
with an irony similar to that of Anatole France, and 
a comprehension of woman's heart (see his Ladies* 
Letter Writer) equalling that of de Maupassant and 
Prevost as novelists, that of Michel Provins as story- 
writer, and not unlike Henri Bernstein in the theatre, 
excelling Donnay, Mirbeau, Becque, Hervieu and 
even Curel, to mention only French authors. 

But Benavente is not only an acute critic of fem- 
inine malice and subterfuge, he is also a great ad- 
mirer and lover of woman in the most noble accept- 
ance of the word. In many of his works he has 
stoutly espoused the rights of woman, the idea of 
the equality of the sexes, and pointed out the moral 
obligation which matrimony imposes upon man. 
Love stands forth prominently in Benavente as the 
principal dynamic factor, love toward every cause 
of human freedom and justice, love towards those 
who are deprived of the pleasure of life and to whom 
entrance into the Synagogue of Gold is proscribed; 
he lends enthusiastic adherence to any cause which 
protects the poor mother in distress, or the children 
and women expelled from the temple where justice 
and opportunity should be the heritage of all. Such 
is the pious ideal around which centres his work of 
twenty years. 

You have only to hear or read him in order to 
love him. His great and serene soul, a treasure- 
house of inexhaustible tenderness, sensitive to all 
noble impulses, reflects its life and fragrance in its 
naturally rich style, caressing and sonorous like the 
arpeggios of an aeolian harp, limpid and shining 



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SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 561 

as rod: crystal, carved as by a magic chisel into 
beauty. 

The stores of his bounty have more than once been 
opened prodigally and benevolently to relieve indi- 
gence and suffering, and his aposlle's pen has con- 
tinually clamored for laws which should reestablish 
rights lost through disuse, and favor the very poor 
and help the needy. 

It is not sufficient to censure and deplore the vices 
and cruelties of society, which are not, as many be- 
lieve, inevitable but the effect of human imperfec- 
tion; it is necessary to labor with perseverance in 
order to uproot and destroy them. Here we find the 
tenacious purpose which is both glorious and edify- 
ing. Benavente, like Seneca, Epictetus, Marcus 
Aurelius, Tolstoi, Ibsen and Shaw, has made good, 
in a sense, a religion, and if, in sympathy with Lacor- 
daire, he i>ardons everything because he understands 
everything, he believes that it is not sufficient to 
understand and pardon, but it is necessary to act 
in order to render difficult and even impossible a 
reversion to evil. 

Benavente does not forget, when he is writing for 
the theatre, what he represents as a man or the 
motives which give impulse to his pen. He is not 
one of those artful dodgers or opportunists, one of 
those who compose their theatrical works in a more 
or less pecuniary attitude towards the generality of 
playgoers. He writes with the object of exposing 
sham and wickedness in any shape or form, and of 
attaddng those whom he considers responsible for 
the general unhappiness i^ society, as at present 
constituted. 

He is aware that the theatre is a most powerful 
forum, and there he does not hesitate to present 
liimself , bearing on his lips not words of general 



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565 SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 

adulation but those of satire and invective. We 
know of authors posing in private life as of ad- 
vanced thought, we know of statesmen who, when 
the moment arrives for discharging their office as 
leaders and shepherds of public opinion, yet yield to 
the popular current and think more of possible 
pecuniary advantages than of their ideals. Bena- 
vente is no deserter from lifers battlefield; he 
neither cows nor surrenders, nor does he allow 
interest to influence him. Bis fame, his literary 
position, does not serve as a pretext for avoiding 
literary adventures in which immediate gains may 
be sacrificed. Instead of asking himself: ''What 
is most agreeable to the masses f he inquires: 
'/Tjniat influences are most necessary in order to 
contribute to the betterment of social surround- 
ings f And thus the orator, the journalist and the 
man of advanced thought melt into the dramatist 
and work in conjunction from behind the footlights. 
Benavente marches in the first line among anti- 
clerical authors. His Los Malhechores del Bien 
(Evil-doers of Good) and many of his other plays 
directly attack hypocrisy and sanctimoniousness in 
all shapes and forms. Just at this moment there is 
a recrudescence in Spain of the ancient infirmity of 
ultramontanism. It is a form of disease which per- 
vades everything, choking society with its parasitic 
growth. Its uprooting is a. most meritorious bat 
ungrateful task. In 1905, when the comedy Los 
Malhechores del Bien was produced in the Lara 
Theatre, the favorite house of the rich middle class, 
ladies were seen to leave the boxes in sign of pro- 
test, and even to-day demonstrations of this sort are 
repeated from time to time. The fact is that such 
women do not like to see themselves portrayed by 
a Benavente, because they are fanatics without any 



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SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 563 

real f aith, moved by a false piety which reduces 
itself to outward show. Genuine f aith, faith which 
springs from the depths of the soul and fills it with 
a noble ecstasy, is worthy of the greatest respect. 
Beligions sentiment, that sentiment which extin- 
goishes hate, awakens an altruistic love and keeps 
alive fraternal impulses, creates huge nations and 
maintains powerful institutions, is a social forc^ 
among the first, but hollow and arid mysticism is a 
pretense, the parody of sane faith and the caricature 
of sincere religion. 

Alfred de Vigny once said: ** There is nothing 
more admirable than a youthful ideal realized by a 
man of mature age.^' This glory belongs to Bena- 
vente, whose ideals have been fulfilled or are on their 
way to realization. That bitterness so general 
amongst the weak and pusillanimous is not known 
to him; he pursues with unruffled spirit the way 
which his triumphs have rendered smooth, and 
appreciates life at its true value, without cherishing 
exaggerated ambitions, above all, as one who has had 
the moral strength to reach the goal of his desires. 

We have considered Benavente as an actor and 
playwright; it remains for us to add a few words 
regarding his work as translator, journalist, orator 
and lecturer, as a member of the Spanish Academy 
and, last but not least, as a practical philanthropist. 

During the earlier days of his career already 
referred to, Benavente, who commands English, 
French, and Italian, translated a number of works 
from those languages, and later on, when an enviable 
position of undisputed authority had been attained, 
he began to translate into Spanish plays of the 
foreign contemporary stage in order to contribute 
to the widening of the point of view of the Spanish 
pablic, and he finished an excellent translation of 



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664 SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 

the works of Shakespeare, of which several volnmes 
have been published. 

Benavente does not dwell exclusively in ethereal 
spheres of pure art. He likes to take a direct part 
in the diverse questions which agitate public opin- 
ion, and he expresses his ideas in important reviews 
and periodicals. In the Madrid Impardal, he con- 
tributes every Monday a causerie entitled De Sohre- 
mesa (Table Talk) in which he comments with in- 
finite grace and acumen upon the most remarkable 
events of the week. 

As Benavente is an actor of no mean order, with 
a brain rich in ideas, it is not surprising that he 
should be an orator of quality. His incisive and per- 
suasive speech is heard with frequency, not only in 
the Juegos Florales (poetic fetes or courts of love) 
and in learned and academic reunions, but also in 
popular lecture halls, schools and workmen's clubs. 
His lectures, delivered in 1913 in the Madrid Con- 
servatory, on the Theatre in Spain, attracted wide 
attention and contained censures of such a severe 
nature upon stage art as at present practiced in the 
country of Calderon and Lope de Vega that man- 
agers and actors have hardly yet forgiven him. 

His literary work has met with the highest recog- 
nition possible in Spain, for the illustrious play- 
wright has been admitted as one of the thirty-six 
members of the Boyal Academy, taking his chair 
in 1913. 

On that occasion the new ** Immortal '^ penned a 
few lines affirming his past principles and ideas. 
** Those who may be anxious regarding my future*' 
— ^he wrote in an article in El Impardal—^ * those who 
consider my entrance into the Academy as an abdi- 
cation of my independence, may rest assured that it 
does not sig^y, now or ever, repudiation of my past 



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SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 565 

works. They represent my life, and, whether good, 
bad or indifferent, correspond to a spiritual state* 
Nor should one be ashamed of faults and errors 
which, after all, were committed in sincerity; they 
have served as guides for the future. Our life is 
not governed by ideas, but by emotions. No one 
assimilates ideas that do not seem to be good to him, 
as no one eats things he does not like, except in cases 
of extreme necessity. Fortunately, I have not been 
obliged to live on ideas which seemed to me repug- 
nant. It is more dangerous to speak for our stomach 
than our conscience, but I consider myself capable 
of allowing my body to die of hunger. Perhaps, if 
ever I had found myself in that extremity, like the 
poor apothecary in Romeo and Juliet, I should have 
said: 'My necessity is the delinquent and not my 
conscience.' *' 

His admirers clamored to erect a statue to him, 
but he declined the honor promptly for motives 
worthy of the highest praise. The letter which he 
wrote explaining his refusal deserves reproduction. 
It is as follows: '*The idea of erecting a statue to 
me, however simple, would always have my most 
decided opposition. I am an enemy of such an hom- 
age in life, especially if the life, whether unhappily 
or by good fortune, is still far from being near to 
its close. I cannot say whether I have written my 
best works, but I know that I may still write my 
worst These sculptural homages, which possess 
something of a funereal character, can only be 
viewed impartially by succeeding generations. How 
do we know what they who follow us will think of our 
works? The weight of much literature bears Hu- 
manity down, and a refining process of selection 
becomes every day more imperative. These memo- 
rials require, moreover, dispassionate judgment, for 



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566 SPAIN'S GREATEST DRAMATIST 

while we are alive, surrounded by friends and ene- 
mies, who is capable of determining where bias ends 
and judgment begins?" 

Benavente likewise refused a demonstration to 
celebrate his admission to the Academy. He suc- 
ceeded in arranging that all the sums subscribed for 
such honors and fetes should be invested in a benevo- 
lent fund entitled El Desayuno E scalar (The School 
Breakfast Fund), whose object is to provide proper 
food for public sdiool children parents of whom can- 
not afford such provision. Our author's father, as I 
have stated at the beginning of this article, was a 
child's specialist, and thus the great playwright has 
a special predilection for the little ones and always 
takes an active part in any movement organized for 
their benefit. In fetes taking place about Christmas 
time, he frequently distributes toys and clothing 
among the ddldren, and has written expressly for 
child audiences a series of exquisite pieces. In gen- 
eral, every beneficent and philanthropic enterprise 
finds at its disposal the heart, the voice and the pen 
of Benavente, his purse and his person contributing 
as well. 

He is a good man, not only in theory but in prac- 
tice. We might say of him that he makes of good- 
ness a passion — ^that real goodness by which, more 
even than by genius, man ascends to the superman 
and approaches Divinity. 

Db. JuMxrs Bbouta. 



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The drama of the near future, the realization of 
the new art of the theatre and of the drama working 
in conjunction, gives promise of being a new species 
of symbolic poetry. It bids fair to be dynamically 
emotive, vast in scope, cosmic in conception, uni- 
versal in appeal. 

From Thb Changing Drama by Archibald Hen- 
derson. 



Note to snbsciibers : 

Several issnes of The Drama are exhausted. 
There is a heavy demand for numbers 1, 4, and 14. 
Anyone willing to sell copies so numbered will con- 
fer a favor upon the magazine by addressing the 
office. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

A Comedy in a Prologue and Three Acts, from the 

Spanish of Jacinto Benavente, by 

John Garrett Underhill 

PSBSONS BSFBBSBKTED 
DOKNA SiBEKA. 

Silvia. 

The Wifb of Pouohinsllb. 

GoLTJMBim. 
liAtTBA. 
BiSELA. 
liEANDEB* 

Crispin. 

Thb Doctob. 

pouohineixs. 

Hableqxjin. 

The Captain. 

Pantaloon. 

The Inn Keepeb. 

The Seobetaby. 

Ist and 2nd Sebvants at the Inn. 

1st and 2nd Constables. 

The action takes place in an imaginary country at 
the beginning of the Seventeenth Century. 

First presented at the Teatro Lara, Madrid, on 
the evening of the 9th of December, 1907. 



Copyright 1915, by John Garrett Underhill. Author- 
ized translation. All rights reserved. 



568 



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THE BONDS OF ENTEREST 

By Jacinto Benavehtb 

PBOLOGXJE 

Spoken hy Cbisfik. 

A curtain dividing in the middle, or a door, centre, 
curtained. 

Here you have the tumbler of the antique farce — 
him who enlivened in the country inns the hard- 
earned leisure of the carter, who made the simple 
rustics gape with wonder in the squares of every 
rural town and village, who in the populous cities 
drew about him great bewildering assemblages, as 
in Paris where Tabarin set up his scaffold on the 
Pont Neuf and challenged the attention of the 
passers-by, from the learned doctor pausing a mo- 
ment on his solemn errand to smoothe out the wrin- 
kles on his brow at some merry quip of old-time 
farce, to the light-hearted cutpurse who there whiled 
away his hours of ease as he cheated his hunger 
with a smile, to prelate and noble dame and great 
grandee in stately carriages, soldier and merchant 
and student and maid. Men of every rank and con- 
dition shared in the rejoicing, — ^men who were never 
brought together in any other way, — ^the grave laugh- 
ing to see the laughter of the gay rather than at the 
wit of the farce, the wise with the foolish, the poor 
with the rich, so staid and formal in their ordinary 
aspect, and the rich to see the poor laugh, their coUi^ 
sciences a little easier at the thought: **Even the 
poor can smile/' For nothing is so contagious as 
the sympathy of a smile. Sometimes our humble 
farce mounted up to Prince's Palaces on the whims 
of the mighty and the great; yet there its rogueries 

569 



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570 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

were not less free. It was the common heritage of 
great and small. Its rade jests^ its sharp and biting 
sentences it took from the people, from that lowly 
wisdom of the poor which tmows how to snffer and 
bear all, and which was softened in those days by 
resignation in men who did not expect too much of 
the world and so were able to laugh at the world 
without bitterness and without hate. From its hum- 
ble origins Lope de Bueda and Shakespere and 
Moliere lifted it up, bestowing upon it high patents 
of nobility, and like enamored princes of the fairy 
tales, elevated poor Cinderella to the topmost 
thrones of Poetry and of Art. But our farce tonight 
can not claim such distitiguished parentage, con- 
trived for your amusement by the inquiring spirit 
of a restless poet of today. This is a little play of 
puppets, impossible in theme, without any reality at 
all. You will soon see how everything happens in 
it that could never happen, how its personages are 
not real men and women, nor the shadows of them, 
but dolls or marionettes of paste and cardboard, 
moving upon wires which are visible even in a little 
light and to the dimmest eye. They are the gro- 
tesque masks of the Italian Comedy of Art, not as 
boisterous as they once were, because they have aged 
with the years and have been able to think much in 
so long a time. The author is aware that so primi- 
tive a spectacle is unworthy of the culture of these 
days; he throws himself upon your courtesy and 
upon your goodness of heart. He only asks that 
you should make yourselves as young as possible. 
The world has grown old, but art never can reconcfle 
itself to growing old, and so, to seem young again, 
it descends to these fripperies. And that is the rea- 
son that these outworn puppets have presumed to 
come to amuse you to-night with their child *8 play. 



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Act I 

A plaza in a city. The fagade of an Inn is at the 

right, having a practicable door, with a knocker 

upon it. Above the door a sign reads Inn. 

Leandbb and Cbispin enter from the left. 

Lbakdbb. This must be a very great city, Orispin* 
Its riches and its power appear in everylMng. 

Crispin. Yes; there are two cities. Pray God 
that we have chanced npon the better one I 

Leandeb. Two cities do yon say, Crispin f Ahl 
Now I understand — an old city and a new city, one 
on either side of the river. 

Crispin. What has the river to do with it, or new- 
ness or agef I say two cities just as there are in 
every city in the world; one for people who arrive 
with money and the other for persons who arrive 
like ns. 

Leandeb. We are lucky to have arrived at all 
without falling into the hands of Justice. And I 
should be heartily glad to stop here awhile and rest 
myself, for I am tired of this running about the 
world so continually. 

Crispin. Not II No, it is the natural condi- 
tion of the free-bom subjects of the Eangdom of 
Eoguery, of whom am I, not to remain seated long 
in any one place, unless it be through compulsion, as 
to say in the'galleys, where, believe me, they are very 
hard seats. But now since we have happened upon 
this city, and to all appearances it is a well fortified 
and provisioned one, let us like prudent captains 
map out our plan of battle beforehand, if we are to 
conquer it with any advantage to ourselves. 

571 



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572 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Lbahdeb. a pretty army we shall make to besiege 
it! 

Crispin. We are men and we have to do with men. 

Lbakdbb. All our wealth is on our backs. You 
were not willing to take off these clothes and sell 
them, when by doing so we could easily have ob- 
tained money. 

Cbisfin. I would sooner take off my skin than 
my good clothes. As the world goes nothing is so 
important as appearances, and the clothes, as yon 
must admit, are the first things to appear. 

Lbandeb. What are we going to do, Crispin t 
Hunger and fatigue have been too much for me. I 
am overcome; I cannot talk. 

Cbisfin. Tliere is nothing for us to do but to take 
advantage of our talents and otir effrontery, for 
without effrontery talents are of no use. The best 
thing, as it seems to me, will be for you to talk as 
little as possible, but be very impressive when you 
do and put on the airs of a gentleman of quality. 
Prom time to time then I will permit you to strike 
me across the back. When anybody asks you a 
question, reply mysteriously and if you open your 
mouth on your own account, be sure that it is with 
dignity, as if you were pronouncing sentence. You 
are young; you have a fine presence. Until now 
you have only known how to dissipate your re- 
sources ; this is the time for you to begin to profit 
by them. Put yourself in my hands. There is noth- 
ing so useful to a man as to have someone always at 
his heels to point out his merits, for modesty in one's 
self is imbecility, while self-praise is madness, and 
so between the two we come into disfavor with the 
world. Men are like merchandise; they are worth 
more or less according to the skill of the salesman 
who markets them. I tell you, though you were but 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 57J^ 

muddy glass, I will so contrive tliat in my hands 
you shall -pasB for pure diamond. And now let us 
knock at the door of this inn, for surely it is the 
proper thing to have lodgings on the main square. 

Lbakdeb. You say at this innf But how are we 
going to payt 

Cbisfik. If you are to be stopped by a little thing 
like that then we had better search out an asylum or 
an almshouse or else beg on the streets, if so be that 
you incline to virtue. Or if to force, then back to the 
highway and cut the throat of the first passer-by. 
If we are to live upon our means, strictly speaking, 
we have no other means to live. 

Leakdbb. I have letters of introduction to per- 
sons of importance in this city, who will be able to 
lend us aid. 

Crispin. Then tear those letters up; never think 
of such baseness again I Introduce yourself to no 
man when you are in need. Those would be pretty 
letters of credit indeed I To-day you will be received 
with the greatest courtesy; they will tell you that 
their houses and their persons are to be considered 
as yours. The next time you call, the servant wiU 
tell you that his master is not at home. No, he is not 
expected soon . . . and at the next visit nobody wiU 
trouble so much as to open the door. This is a 
world of giving and taking; a shop, a mart, a place 
of exchange, and before you ask you have to offer. 

Lbakdeb. And what can I offer when I have 
nothingf 

Obisfin. How low an opinion you must have of 
yourself! Is a man in himself, then, worth nothingf 
A man may be a soldier, and by his valor win great 
victories. He may be a husband or a lover, and with 
sweet, soothing medicine, restore some noble dame 
to health, or some damsel of high degree, who has 



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574 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

been pining away through melancholy. He may be 
the servant of some mighty and powerful lord, who 
becomes attached to him and raises him up through 
his favor, and he may be so many other things be- 
sides that I have not the breath even to begin to run 
them over. When one wants to climb, why any stair 
will do. 

Leandeb. But if I have not even that stair f 

Crispin. Then accept my shoulders, and I will 
lift you up. I offer you the top. 

Leakdbb. And if we both fall down upon the 
ground! 

Cbispin. God grant that it may be soft I [Knock- 
ing at the inn-door.] Hello! Ho within there! 
Hello, I say, in the inn! Devil of an innkeeper! 
Does no one answer! What sort of a tavern is this! 

Leandeb. Why are you making all this noise 
when as yet you have scarcely begun to callt 

Cbismn. Because it is monstrous that they should 
make us wait like this ! [Calling again more loudly.] 
Hello within! Who's there, I say? Hello in the 
house ! Hello, you thousand devils ! . . . 

Innkeepeb. [Within.] Who's there? What 
knocking and what shouting at my door! Is this 
the way to stand and wait! Out, I say! 

Crispin. It is too much ! And now he will tell us 
that this dilapidated old tavern is a fit lodging for 
a gentleman. 

[The Innkeeper and Two Sebvants come out of the 

Inn.] 

Innkeeper. Softly, sirs, softly; for this is not 
a tavern but an inn and great gentlemen have been 
lodged in this house. 

Cbispin. I would like to have seen those same 
great gentlemen — gentle, a little more or less. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 575 

Whatt It is easy enough to see by these rascals that 
they are not accastomed to waiting on persons of 
quality. They stand there like blockheads without 
running to do our service. 

Innkeeper. My life I But you are impertinent I 

Lbandbb. My servant is a little forward, perhaps. 
You will find him somewhat hasty in his temper. 
However, your inn will be good enough for the brief 
time we shall be able to remain in it. Prepare an 
apartment for me and another for my servant, and 
let us spare these idle words. 

Innkebpbb. I beg your pardon, sir. If you had 
only spoken before. ... I don^t know how it is, 
but somehow gentlemen are always so much more 
polite than their servants. 

Cbispin. The fact is my master is so good na- 
tured that he will put up with anything. But I know 
what is proper for his service, and I have no mind to 
wink at villainy. Lead us to our apartments. 

Innkebpbb. But where is your luggage T 

Crispin. Do you suppose that we are carrying 
our luggage with us on our backs, like a soldier's 
knapsack, or trundling it like student's bundles in 
our hands! Kjiow that my master has eight carts 
coining after him, which wil arrive if he stays here 
long enough, and at that he will only remain for the 
time which is absolutely necessary to conclude the 
secret mission with which he has been entrusted in 
this city. 

Lbandbb. Will you be silent and hold your 
tongue? What secret is it possible to keep with 
youf If I am discovered through your impudence, 
through your misguided talk . . . [He threatens 
and strikes Crispin with his sword.] 

Crispin. Help! He is killing me! [Running.] 



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576 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Inkkbepbb. [Interposing between Lbahtdsb and 
Crispin.] Holdi sir I 

Leandbb. Let me chastise himl The most intol- 
erable of vices is this desire to talk. 

Ikkesbpbb. Do not beat him, sir I 

Lbakdeb. Let me at himl Let me at himl Will 
the slave never learn f [As he is about to strike 
Crispin, Crispin runs and hides himself behind the 
Innkrbpbr, who receives all the blows.] 

Crispin. [Crying out] Ay I Ay I Ay I 

Lif NKEEPER. Ay, say 1 1 For I got all the blows ! 

Lbander. [To Crispin.] Now you see what you 
have done. This poor man has received all the 
blows. Down! Down! Beg his pardon I 

Innkbbper. It will not be necessary, sir. I par- 
don him willingly. [To the servants.] What are 
yon doing standing there! Prepare the rooms in 
which the Emperor of Mantua is accustomed to re- 
side when he is stopping in this house, and let dinner 
be made ready for these gentlemen. 

Crispin. Perhaps it would be as well if I saw to 
that myself, otherwise they may delay and spoil 
everything, and commit a thousand blunders for 
which I i^ould be made to answer, for my master, 
as you see, is not a man to submit to insult. . . . 
I am with you, sirrahs — ^and remember who it is 
you serve, for the greatest good fortune or the direst 
calamity in the world enters at this moment behind 
you through these doors. 

[The servants, followed by Crispin, re-enter the 
Inn.] 

Innkbepbr. [To Lsandsr.] Will you be good 
enough to let me have your name, where you come 
from, and the business which brings you to this 
cityt . . • 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 577 

Lbakdeb. [Seeing Crispin re-enter from the bm.] 
My servant will let yon have them, . . • Learn not 
to bother me with foolish questions. • • • [He goes 
into the Inn.] 

Crispin. What have yon done nowT Yon have 
not dared to qnestion my master f If yon want to 
keep him so mnch as another honr in yonr honse, 
never speak to him again 1 Nol Not one word I 

iNNKBBPmt. Bnt the laws are very strict. It is 
absolutely necessary that the questions should be 
answered. The law in this city . . • 

Crispin. Never mention the law to my master! 
Silence I Silence I And for shame I You do not 
know whom yon have in your house; no, and if yon 
did you would not be wasting your time on these 
impertinences. 

Innkrbpbr. Bnt am I not to be told at least . • • 

Crispin. Bolt of Heaven! Silence I ... Or I 
will call my master, and he will tell you whatever he 
sees fit; and then you will not understand! Take 
care! Look to it that he wants for nothing! Wait 
on him with every one of your five senses, or you will 
have good reason to regret it ! Have you no knowl- 
edge of men f Can *t you read character t Don 't you 
see who my master is? What! How is that! What 
do you sayt No reply t . . . Come! Come! . • . 
In! . • . 

[He goes into the Inn, pushing the Innkebpbb 
before him. The Captain and HAR^sQinN enter from 
the left.] 

Haklbqttin. As we wander back from the fields 
which surround this city, — and beyond a doubt they 
are the best part of it, — ^it seems that without intend- 
ing it, we have happened upon this Inn. What a 
creature of habit is man! And surely it is a vile 
habit, this being obliged to eat every day. 



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578 



TEE BONDS OF INTEREST 



. 1 



Captain. The sweet music of your verses had 
quite deprived me of all thought. Delightful priv- 
ilege of the poet I 

Haklbquin. Which does not prevent him from 
heing equally lacking upon his own i)art. The poet 
wants everything. I approach this Inn with fear. 
Will they consent to trust us to-day T If not, we 
must rely upon your sword. 

Captain. My sword! The soldier *s sword, like 
the poet's lyre, is little valued in this city of mer- 
chants and traders. . . . We have fallen upon evil 
days. 

Hablbquin. We have. Suhlime poesy which sings 
of great and glorious exploits is no more. It is 
equally profitless to offer your genius to the great to 
praise or to lampoon them. Flattery and satire are 
hoth alike to them. They neither thank you for the 
one nor fear the other, nor do they read them. 
Aretino himself would have starved to death in these 
days. 

Captain. But tell me, how is it with ust What 
is the position of the soldier t Because we were de- 
feated in the late wars — ^more through these base 
traJBSckers who govern us and send us to defend their 
interests without enthusiasm and without arms, than 
through any power of the enemy, as if a man could 
fight with his whole heart for what he did not love 
—defeated by these traffickers who did not contrib- 
ute so much as a single soldier to our ranks or 
lend one single penny to the cause but upon good 
interest and yet better security; who, as soon as they 
scented danger and saw their pockets in jeopardy, 
threatened to make common cause with the enemy, — 
now they blame us, they abuse us and despise us, and 
seek to economize out of our martial misery, which 
is the little pay that they give us, and would dismiss 



ii 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 579 

us if they dared if they were not afraid that some 
day all those whom they have oppressed by their 
tyramiy and their greed would rise up and turn 
against them. And woe to them when they do, if we 
remember that day on which side lie duty and justice I 

Hablequin. When that day comes you will find 
us at your side. 

Captain. Poets cannot be depended upon for 
anything. Tour spirits are like the opal, which looks 
different in every light. You are in an ecstasy to-day 
over what is about to be bom and to-morrow over 
what is in the last stages of dissolution. You have 
a special weakness for falling in love with ruins, 
which to my mind is a melancholy thing. And since 
as a rule you sit up all night, you more often see the 
sun set than the day break ; you know more about 
going down than you do of rising. 

HABLEQxnN. That cannot truthfully be said of me. 
I have often seen the sun rise when I had no place 
to lay my head. Besides, how can you expect a man 
to hail the day as blithely as a lark when it always 
breaks so unfortunately for himt What say youT 
Shall we try our fatet 

Captain. It cannot be avoided. Be seated, and 
let us await what our good host has in store. 

SLoo^EQUiN. [Calling into the Inn.] Hello, there I 
Ho! Who serves to-day f 

[The Innkbepbb enters.] 

Innkeepeb. Ah, gentlemen! Is it youf I am 
sorry, but there is no entertainment in the Inn 
to-day. 

Captain. And for what reason, if it is proper to 
ask the question f 

Innkeepeb. A proper question for you to ask. 
You don't suppose that I trust nobody for what is 
consumed in this house f 



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580 



THE BONDS OF INTEREST 



Captain. Ah! Is that the reason f An<^ are we 
not persons of credit, who are to be trusted f 

Innkbbfeb. No ; not by me. And as I never ex- 
pect to collect anything, you have had all that cour- 
tesy requires out of me already. This being the 
case, you will be so kind as to remove yourselves 
from my door. 

Hablbquin. Do you imply that there is nothing 
to be counted between us but money! Are all the 
praises that we have lavished upon your house in all 
parts of the country to go for nothing f I have even 
composed a sonnet in your honor, in which I cele- 
brate the virtues of your stewed partridges and hare 
pie I . . . And as for my friend, the Captain, you 
may rest assured that he alone would uphold the 
reputation of your hostelry against an army. Is 
that a feat which is worth nothing f Is there noth- 
ing but clinking of coins in your earsf 

Innkeeper. I am not in a jesting mood; it does 
not suit my humor. I want none of your sonnets, 
nor the Captain's sword either, which might better 
be employed in other business. 

Captain. Name of Mars! • . . Tou are right 
Better employed upon an impudent rascal's back, 
flaying off his hide ! [Threatening him and striking 
him with his sword.] 

Innkeeper [Crying out.] Whatt How is thisT 
You strike me f Help ! Justice ! 

HABUsQxnN. [Restraining the Captain.] Dont 
run your head into a noose on account of such a 
worthless scamp. 

Captain. I shall kill him. [Striking Mm.] 

Innkeeper. Help! Justice! 

[The Two Servants enter, running, from the Inn.] 

Servants. They are killing our master! 



m 



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THE BONDS OF INTEBE8T 581 

Ikkkxbfeb. Save me I 

Caftaik. Not one of them shall remain alive 1 

Iknkeefbil Will no one comef 

[Cbispik and Leandbb enter.] 

Leandbb. What is this brawl T 

Cbispik. In the presence of my master f Before 
the house where he resides f Is there no rest pos- 
sible, nor quiet I Hold I Or I shall summon Justice. 
Order I Quiet I 

Ikkkebpeb. This will be the ruin of met With 
such a dignitary stopping in my house. . • • 

Hablequik. Who is hef 

Inkkeepbb. Never dare to ask me his name I 

Captain. Your pardon, sir, if we have disturbed 
your rest; but this rascally villain • . . 

Innkebpbb. It wasn't my fault, my lord. These 
unblushing scoundrels . • • 

Captain. Whatt IT Unblushing— IT I can 
bear no more I . • . 

Cbispin. Hold, sir Captain, for one is here who is 
able to redress your wrongs, if so be you have had 
them of this man. 

Innkbepeb. Consider, sir, that for more than a 
month these fellows have eaten at my expense with- 
out the payment of one penny . . . without so much 
as the thought of payment ; and now because I refuse 
to serve them to-day, they turn upon me. 

Hablequin. I do not turn because I am accus- 
tomed to face that which is unpleasant. 

Captain. Is it reasonable that a soldier should 
not be given credit T 

SLoo^EQUiN. Is it reasonable that a sonnet should 
be allowed to pass for nothing, although it is written 
with the best of flourishes in praise of his stewed 
partridges and hare piesT . • . And all this upon 



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582 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

credit on my part, for I have never tasted one of 
them, but only his eternal mutton and potatoes. 

Crispin. These two noble gentlemen are right. 
It is infamous that a poet and a soldier should be 
denied in this manner. 

Habubquin. Ah, sir I You have a great soul I 

Obisfin. No, I have not — ^but my master, who is 
here present. Being a grand gentleman, there is 
nothing which appeals to him so much in the world 
as a poet or a soldier. 

Leandeb. To be sure. I agree with you. 

Gbisfin. You need have no doubt but that while 
he remains in this city you will be treated with the 
consideration you deserve. You shall want for noth- 
ing. Whatever expense you may be at in this Lm, 
is to be placed upon his account. 

Leandbb. To be sure. I agree with you. 

Obispin. And let the landlord look to it that yon 
get your deserts ! 

Innkbbpbb. Sirl . . . 

Cbispin. And don't be so stingy with those par- 
tridges and hairy pies. It is not proper that a poet 
like Signer Harlequin should be obliged to draw 
upon his imagination for his descriptions of sudi 
material things. 

Harlequin. What! Do you know my namef 

Obisfin. No, I do not; but my master, being sudi 
a great gentleman, knows all the poets who exist or 
who ever did exist in the world, provided always 
that they were worthy of the name. - 

Leandeb. To be sure. I agree with you. 

Cbispin. And none of them is more famous than 
you. Signer Harlequin. Whenever I consider that 
you have not been treated here with the respect 
which is your due . . . 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 583 

Iknkeepeb. Your pardon, sir. They shall be 
made welcome as you desire. It is sufficient that 
you should be their security. 

Captain. Sir, if I can be of service to you in any 
way . . • 

Crispin. What! Is it a small service to be per- 
mitted to know youf glorious Captain, worthy 
only to be sung by this immortal poet! 

Hablequin. Sir I 

Captain. Sir I 

Hablequin. So my verses are known to youT 

Crispin. Howt . . . Bjiownt And if known, 
would it ever be possible to forget themf Is not 
ttiat wonderful sonnet yours, which begins : 
**The soft hand which caresses and which slays . . .'* 

Harlequin. What? 

Crispin. What! "The soft hand which caresses 
and which slays'* ... It does not say what. 

HARLBQxnN. Nonsense I No, that is not my 
sonnet. 

Crispin. Then it is worthy of being yours. And 
you, Captain! Who is not familiar with your mar- 
velous exploits t Was it not you who, alone, with 
twenty men, assaulted the Castie of the Bed Bock in 
the famous battle of the Black Field! 

Captain. You know, then! 

Crispin. Howt ... Do I know! Oh! Many a 
time, transported, I have listened to my master re- 
count the story of your prowess! Twenty men, 
twenty, and you in front of them, and in front of 
you the castle. . . • Boom! Boom! Boom! from 
the castle, shots and bombards, darts and flaming 
squibs and boiling oil. . . . And the twenty men all 
there standing like one man, and you in front of 
them! And from above . . . Boom! Boom! Boomt 
And the roll of the drums . . . Bum-a-tum-tum! . . • 



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584 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

And the blare of the trumpets • • • Taral Tara-ral 
And you all the while there alone with your sword 

• • • Swish! Swish I Swish I A blow here, a blow 
there. Or without your sword . . . Above, below 

• . • A head, an arm • . • 

[He begins to rain blows about him right and left, 

and to kick, using his fists, his feet, and the flat 

side of his sword, indifferently.] 

Sbbvants. Ayl Ayl OhI OhI 

Inkkeepeb. Hold! Hold I Restrain yourself 1 
You don't know what you are doing. You are all 
excited ... It is as if the battle were really taking 
place • • . 

CTbispin. Howf I am excited f Know that I al- 
ways feel in my breast the animus belli . . . the 
thirst for war 1 

Captain. It seems almost as if you must have 
been there. 

Crispin. To hear my master describe it is the 
same as being there. No, it is preferable to it. And 
is such a soldier, the hero of the Bed Bocks in the 
Black Fields, to be insulted thusT Ah ! How fortu- 
nate it is that my master was present, and that im- 
portant business had brought him to this city, for he 
will see to it that you are accorded the considera- 
tion you deserve. ... So sublime a poet, so great a 
captain! . . . [To the servants.] Quick! What are 
you doing there! Bring the best food that you have 
in the house and set it before these gentlemen. And 
first of all get a bottle of good wine; it will be a 
rare pleasure to my master to drink with them. He 
will esteem himself indeed fortunate. . . . Don't 
stand there and stare! Quick! Bestir yourselves! 

Innkbbpeb. Bun, run! Igo. . . • We are getting 
something out of this after all. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 585 

[The Ihkksepbb and the Two Sebvants run into 

the Inn.] 

Hablbqitin. Ah sir! How can we ever repay 
70uT 

Captaik. HowT We certainly never shall . . . 

Gbisfik. Let nobody speak of payment before n^y 
master. The very thought gives offense. Be seated, 
be seated. My master, who has wined and dined so 
many princes, so many noblemen at his table, will 
deem ^is an even greater pleasure. 

Lbakdeb. To be sure. I agree with you. 

Obispik. My master is not a man of many words ; 
but, as you see, the few that he does speak, are, as it 
were, fraught with wisdom. 

Hablequin. His grandeur appears in everything. 

Captain. You have no idea what a comfort it is 
to our drooping spirits to find a noble gentleman like 
you who condescends to treat us with such consid- 
eration. 

Cbispik. Why, this is nothing to' what he will 
condescend to do ! I know that my master will never 
rest satisfied to stop at such a trifle. He wiU elevate 
you to his own level and then hold you up beside 
him on the same exalted plane. ... He is just that 
sort of man. 

Leandeb. [To Cbispin.] Don't let your tongue 
run away with you, Crispin. . . . 

Cbispik. My master is averse to foolish talk; but 
you will soon know him by his deeds. 

[The Ihnkebpeb and the Sebvants re-enter, bringing 

wine and provisions which they place 

upon the table.] 

Iknkbbpeb. Here is the wine — ^and the dinner. 

Cbispin. Drink, drink and eat. • • . See that they 

want for nothing; my master is agreeable. He will 



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686 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

be responsible. His responsibility is fortunately not 
in question. If you would like anything you don't 
see^ don't hesitate to ask for it. My master will 
order it. And let the landlord look to it that it is 
brought promptly, for verily at this business, he is 
the sorriest kind of knave. 

Innksbpeb. To be sure ... I don't agree with 
you. 

Cbispik. Not another word I You insult my 
master. 

Captain. Your very good health I 

Lbandeb. Your good healths, gentlemen! To the 
health of the greatest poet and the best soldier in 
the world I 

HABiiBQXTiK. To the health of the noblest gen- 
tleman. . . . 

Caftaik. The most liberal and the most gen- 
erous . . . 

Cbisfik. In the world I Excuse me, but I must 
drink too, though it may seem presumptuous. Bat 
on a day like this, this day of days which has brought 
together the sublimest poet, the bravest captain, the 
noblest gentleman, and the most faithful servant 
... in the universe . . . [They drink.] Now you 
will permit my master to retire. The important busi- 
ness which brings him to the city admits of no 
further delay. 

Leakdeb. To be sure. 

Cbtspin. You will not fail to return every day 
and present your respects to himf 

HabiiBquin. Every hour I And I am going to 
bring with me all the poets and all the musicians of 
my acquaintance, to serenade him with music and 
songs. 

Captain. I shall bring my whole company with 
me with torches and banners. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 587 

Leandbb. You will offend my modesty. 

Crispin, And now eat, drink. . . . Mind you, 
sirrahs I About it t Quick ! Serve these gentlemen. 
[To the Captain.] A word in your ear. • • . Are 
you out of money? 

Captain. What shall I sayt 

Crispin. Say no more. [To the Innkeeper.] 
Eh I This way! Let these gentlemen have forty or 
fifty crowns on my master ^s account, as a present 
from him. • . . Omit nothing! See that they are 
satisfied t 

Innkeeper. Don*t worry, sir. Forty or fifty, did 
you say? 

Crispin. While you are about it, better make it 
sixty. . . . Your health, gentlemen! 

Captain. Long life to the noblest gentleman in 
the world! 

Harlequin. Long life! 

Crispin. Shout long life, too, you uncivil people ! 

Innkeeper and Servants. Long life ! Long life ! 

Crispin. Long life to the sublimest poet and the 
best soldier in the world! 

All. Long life ! 

Leander. [To Crispin.] Are you mad, Crispin? 
What are you doing? How are we ever going to get 
out of this? 

Crispin. The same way that we got in. You see 
now poesy and arms are ours. ... On! We shall 
achieve the conquest of the world! 
[AU exchange hows <md salutations, after which 

Leander a/nd Crispin go out upon the left, as they 

came in. The Captain and HARLEQxnN attack the 

dinner which is set before them hy the Innkeeper 

and the Servants, who wait upon them assiduously 

with anticipation of their every want.] 

OTJRTAIN 



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ACT n 

A garden with the fagade of a paviUon opening 

upon it. 

DoififA SntENA and Colxtmbinb enter from the 

pavilion. 

SiBBNA. Is it not enongh to deprive a woman of 
her five senses, Columbine t Can it be possible that 
a lady should see herself placed in so embarrassing 
a position and by low unfeeling people t How did 
you ever dare to show yourself in my presence with 
such a talet 

Columbine. But sooner or later wouldn't you 
have had to know it? 

SiBBNA. I had rather have died first. But did 
they all say the samet 

Columbine. All . . . one after the other, exactly 
as I have told it to you. The tailor absolutely 
refuses to send you the gown until you have paid 
him everything you owe. 

SiBENA. Impudent rascal I Everything I owe 
him. The barefaced highwayman! And does he 
not stand indebted for his reputation and his very 
credit in this city to me? Until I employed biTn in 
the decoration of my person he did not know, so to 
speak, what it was to dress a lady. 

Columbine. All the cooks and musicians and 
servants say the same. They refuse to play to-night 
or to appear at the fete unless they are all paid 
beforehand. 

SiBBNA. The rogues I The brood of vipers I 
Whence does such insolence spring? Were these 

588 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 589 

people not bom to serve? Are they to be paid now- 
adays in nothing but money f Is money the only 
thing which has value in the world? Woe unto her 
who is left without a husband to look after her as I 
am • . . without male relatives, alas, without any 
masculine connection! ... A woman by herself is 
worth nothing in the world, be she never so noble or 
virtuous. O day foretold of the Apocalypse I Surely 
anti-Christ has comet 

Columbine. I never saw you so put out before. 
I hardly know you. You have always been able to 
rise above these calamities. 

SntBNA. Those were other days, Columbine. Then 
I had my youth to count on, and my beauty, as pow- 
erful allies. Princes and great grandees cast them- 
selves at my feet. 

Columbine. But on the other hand you did not 
have the experience and knowledge of the world 
which you have now. And as far as beauty is con- 
cerned, surely you never shone with such refulgence 
as to-day — ^that is, if you will listen to me. 

SntBKA. Don't attempt to flatter me. Do you 
suppose that I should ever have got myself into 
such a fix if I had been the Donna Sirena of my 
twenties? 

Columbine. Your twenty suitors? 

Siren A. What do you think? I had no end of 
suitors. And you who have not yet begun upon 
twenty, you have not the sense to perceive what 
that means and to profit by it. I would never have 
believed it possible. Otherwise would I have adopted 
you for my niece if I had, though I saw myself 
abandoned by every man in the world and reduced 
to live alone with a maid-servant? If instead of 
wasting your youth on this impecunious Harlequin, 
this poet who can bring you nothing but ballads and 



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590 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

verses, you had had the sense to make a proper use 
of your time, we should not be languishing now in 
this humiliating dilemma. 

Columbine. What do you expect! I am too yoxmg 
to resign myself yet to being loved without loving. 
If I am to become skilful in making others suffer 
for love of me, surely I must learn first what it is 
one suffers when one loves. And when I do, I am 
positive I shall be able to profit by it. I have not 
yet turned twenty, but you must not think because 
of that I have so little sense as to mean to marry 
Harlequin. 

SiBENA. I would not trust you. You are capri- 
cious, flighty . . . and allow yourself to be run away 
with by your imagination. But first let us consider 
what is to be done. How are we to extricate our- 
selves from this horrible dilemma t In a short time 
the guests will arrive — all persons of quality and 
importance, and among them Signer Polichinelle and 
his wife and daughter, who, for various reasons, are 
of more account to me than the rest. You know my 
house has been frequented of late by several noble 
gentlemen, somewhat frayed in their nobility, it is 
true, as I am, through want of means. For any one 
of them, the daughter of Signer Polichinelle, with 
her rich dowry and the priceless sum which she will 
inherit upon her father's death, would be an untold 
treasure. She has many suitors, but I interpose my 
influence with Signer Polichinelle and with his wife 
in favor of them all. Whichever one should be for- 
tunate I know that he will requite my good offices 
with his bounty, because I have made them all sign 
an agreement which assures me of it. I have no 
other means than this to repair my state. If now 
some rich merchant or some trader by some lucky 
chance would fall in love with you. . . . Ah, who can 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 591 

sayf This house might become again what it was in 
other days. But if the insolence of these people 
breaks out to-night, if I cannot give the fete ... No I 
I cannot think of it. . . . It would be the death of 
met 

CoLTTMBiKB. Do not troublc yourself^ Donna 
Sirena. We have enough in the house to provide the 
entertainment. As for the music and the servants, 
Signer Harlequin will be able to supply them — ^he is 
not a poet and in love with me for nothing. Many 
singers and choice spirits of his acquaintance will 
willingly lend themselves to any adventure. You 
will see that nothing will be lacking, and your guests 
will all say that they have never been present at so 
marvelous a fete in their lives. 

SntBNA. Ah, Columbine I If that could only be, 
how greatly you would rise in my estimation I Bim, 
run and seek out your poet. • . . There is no time 
to lose. 

Columbine. My poett Surely he is walking up 
and down now on the other side of the garden, wait- 
ing for a sign. . . . 

SntEKA. I fear it would not be proper for me to 
be present at your interview. I ought not to demean 
myself by soliciting such favors. I leave all that to 
you. Let nothing be wanting to the fete and you 
shall be well repaid, for these terrible straits through 
which we are passing to-night cannot continue for- 
ever ... or else I am not Donna Sirena t 

CoLiTMBiNB. All will be welL Have no fear. 

[Donna Sibbna goes out through the pavUion.] 

CoLiTMBiNB. [Stepping towards the right and 
calling.] Harlequin! Harlequin I [Crispin enters.] 
It isn't he I 

Crispin. Be not afraid, beautiful Columbine, mis- 
tress of the mightiest poet, who yet has not been 



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592 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

able to heighten in his verses the splendors of yoor 
charm. If the picture must always be different from 
reality, the advantage in this case is all on the side 
of reality. You can imagine no doubt what the 
picture must have been. 

Columbine. Are you a poet, too, or only a cour- 
tier and a flatterer f 

Crispin. I am the best friend of your lover Harle- 
quin, although I only met him to-day; but he has 
had ample proof of my friendship in this short time. 
My greatest desire has been to salute you, and Signor 
Harlequin would not have been the poet that I take 
him for, had he not trusted to my friendship implic- 
itly. But for his confidence I should have been in 
danger of falling in love with you simply upon the 
opportunity which he has afforded me of seeing you. 

Columbine. Signor Harlequin trusted as much 
in my love as he did to your friendship. Don't take 
so much credit to yourself. It is as foolish to trust 
a man while he lives as a woman while she loves. 

Crispin. Now I see that you are not so fatal to 
the sight as to the ear. 

Columbine. Pardon me. . . . Before the fete to- 
night I must speak with Signor Harlequin, and • • . 

Crispin. It will not be necessary. That is why I 
have come, a poor ambassador from him and from 
my master, who stoops to kiss your hand* 

Columbine. Who is your master, if I may ask 
that question! 

Crispin. The noblest and most powerful gentle- 
man in the world. . . . Permit me for the present 
not to mention his name. Soon it will be knowiL 
My master desires to salute Donna Sirena and to be 
present at her fete to-night. 

Columbine. At her fete? Don't you know . . . 

Crispin. I know everything. That is my business 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 593 

— ^to investigate. I know that there were certain in- 
conveniences which threatened to becloud it; but 
there will be none. . Everything is provided for. 

OoLXTMBiKE. What I Then you do know? . • . 

Cbispik. I assure you everything is provided for 
— a sumptuous reception, lights and fireworks, mu- 
sicians and sweet song. It will be the most brilliant 
fete which ever was in the world. 

CoLiTMBiNB. Ah, then you are an enchanter? 

Cbispin. Now you begin to know me. But I shall 
only tell you that I do not bring good fortune with 
me for nothing. The people of this city are so intel- 
ligent that I am sure they will be incapable of frown- 
ing upon it and discouraging it with foolish scruples 
when they see it arrive. My master knows that 
Signer Polichinelle and his only daughter, the beau- 
tiful Silvia, the richest heiress in the city, are to be 
present at the fete to-night My master has to fall 
in love with her, my master has to marry her; and 
my master will know how to requite in fitting fashion 
the good offices of Donna Sirena and of yourself, in 
the matter, if so be that you do him the honor to 
assist in his suit. 

Columbine. Your speech is impertinent. Such 
boldness gives offense. 

Gbispik. Time presses and I have no leisure to 
pay compliments. 

CoLUMBiKB. If the master is to be judged by the 
man * . . 

Crispin, Reassure yourself. You will find my 
master the most courteous, the most affable gentle- 
man in the world. My effrontery permits him to be 
modest. The hard necessities of life sometimes com- 
pel the noblest cavalier to descend to the devices of 
the ruffian, just as sometimes they oblige the noblest 
ladies, in order to maintain their state, to stoop to 



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594 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

menial tricks, and this mixture of rain and nobility 
in one person is out of harmony with nature. It is 
better to divide among two persons that which is 
usually found clumsily confused and joined in one. 
My master and myself, as being one person, are each 
a part of the other. Would it could be always sol 
We all have within ourselves a great and splendid 
gentleman of lofty hopes and towering ideals, capa- 
ble of everything that is noble and everything that is 
good — ^and by his side, a humble servant bom 
to forlorn hopes and miserable and hidden things, 
who employs himself in the base actions to which 
we are enforced by life. The art of living is so to 
separate the two that when we fall into any ignominy 
we can always say : * * It was not my fault ; it was not 
I. It was my servant.*' In the greatest misery to 
which we sink there is always something in us which 
rises superior to ourselves. We should despise 
ourselves too much if we did not believe that we 
are better than our lives. ... Of course you know 
who my master is: He is the one of the tower- 
ing thoughts, of the lofty, beautiful ideals. Of 
course you know who I am: I am the one of 
the forlorn and hidden things, the one who always 
grovels and toils on the ground, delving among false- 
hood and humiliation and lies. Only there is some- 
thing in me which redeems me and elevates me in my 
own eyes. It is the loyalty of my service, this loy- 
alty which humiliates and abases itself that another 
may fly, that he may always be the lord of the tower- 
ing thoughts, of the lofty, beautiful ideals. 
[Music is heard.] 

CoLXJMBiKE. What is this music? 

Cbisfik. The music which my master is bringing 
with him to the fete with all his pages and all the 
attendants of his train, accompanied by a great court 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 595 

of poets and smgers presided over by Signor Harle- 
quin, and an entire legion of soldiers with the Cap- 
tain at their head, illuminating his coming with 
torches, with rockets and re4 fire. 

CoLUMBiKB. Who is your master, that he is able 
to do so mucht I run to tell my lady . . . 

Crispik. It will not be necessary. She is here. 

[Donna Sibbna enters from the paviUon.] 

SiBBNA. What is thisf Who has prepared this 
music t What troop of people is arriving at my door! 

CoLXTMBiNB. Ask uo questious. Know that to-day 
a great gentleman has arrived in this city, and it is 
he who offers you this fete to-night. His servant 
will tell you everything. I hardly know myself 
whether I have been talking to a great rogae or a 
great madman. Whichever it is, I assure you that he 
is a most extraordinary man. 

SiBENA. Then it is not Harlequin t . . . 

GoLUMBiNB. Ask no questions. ... It is all like 
a work of magic. 

Cbispin. Donna Sirena, my master begs permis- 
sion to kiss your hand. So great a lady and so noble 
a gentleman ought not, when they meet, to be obliged 
to descend to indignities inappropriate to their state. 
That is why, before he arrives, I have come to tell 
you everything. I am acquainted with a thousand 
notable exploits of your history, which should I but 
refer to them, would alone be sufficient to assure me 
of your attention. • . . But it would be an imperti- 
nence to mention them. [Handing her a paper.] 
My master acknowledges in this paper over his sig- 
nature the great sum which he will be in your debt 
if you are able to fulfiU upon your part that which 
he has here the honor to propose. 

Sibbna. What paper and what debt is thisf 



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596 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

[Reading the paper to herself.] How? A hundred 
thousand crowns at once and an eqnal quantity upon 
the death of Signor Polichinelley if your master suc- 
ceeds in marrying his daughter? What insolence 
and what infamy have we here? And to a lady ! Do 
you know to whom you are speaking? Do you know 
what house this is? 

Obisfin. Donna Sirena! . . . Forego your wrath. 
There is nobody present for whom you need care. 
Put that paper away with the others, and let us 
not refer to the matter again. My master proposes 
nothing which is improper to you nor would you con- 
sent that he should do so. Whatever may happen 
hereafter will be the work of chance and of love. I, 
the servant, was the one who set this unworthy 
snare. You are ever the noble dame, my master the 
virtuous cavalier, and as you meet in this festival 
to-night, you will talk of a thousand gallant and 
priceless things, as your guests stroll by and whisper 
enviously in praise of the ladies' beauty and the ex- 
quisite artfulness of their dress, the splendour and 
magnificence of the entertainment, the sweetness of 
themusic, the nimble grace of the dancers 'feet. . . . 
And who is to say that this is not the whole story? 
Is not life just this — ^a fete in which the music 
serves to cover up the words, the words to cover up 
the thoughts? Then let the music sound, let conver- 
sation flash and sparkle with its smiles, let the sup- 
per be well served . . . this is all that concerns the 
guests. See, here is my master, who comes to salute 
you in all courtesy. 

[LsAKDBB, Hablbqtjin, and the Captain enter from 
the right.] 

Lbakdeb. Donna Sirena, I kiss your hand. 
SntENA. Sir . . . 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 597. 

liBAifBHB. My servant has already told you in my 
name mnch more than I myself could say. 

Gbisfih. Being a gentleman of discretion, my 
master is a man of few words. His admiration is 
mute. 

HABiiBQiTiN. He wisely knows how to admire. 

Captain. True merit. 

HABiiBQUiif • True valor. 

Captain. The divine art of poesy. 

HABiiBQXTiN. The incomparable science of war. 

Captain. His greatness appears in everything. 

Hablequin. He is the noblest gentleman in the 
world. 

Captain. My sword shall always be at his service. 

Hablbqttin. I shall dedicate my greatest poem to 
his glory. 

Crispin. Enough I Enough I You will offend his 
native modesty. See how he tries to hide himself 
and slip away. He is a violet. 

SiBBNA. Surely he has no need to speak for him- 
self who can make others talk like this in his praise. 

[After hows tmd salutations the men aU withdraw 

upon the right, Donna Sibbna and Columbinb 

remaining alone.] 

Sibbna. What do you think of this, Columbine f 

CoiiiTMBiNB. I think that the master is most at- 
tractive in his figure and the servant most captivat- 
ing in his impertinence. 

Sibbna. We shall take advantage of them both. 
For either I know nothing of the world or about men, 
or else fortune this day has set her foot within my 
doors. 

Columbinb. Surely then it must be fortune, for 
you do know something of the world, and about men 
. . . what don^t you know! 



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598 



THE BONDS OF INTEREST 






SiRENA. Here are Bisela and Laura, the first to 
arrive. . . . 

Columbine. When were they the last at any- 
thingt I leave them to yon ; I must not lose sight of 
onr cavalier. 
[She goes out to the right. Laura and Rt8KT«a enter.] 

SntBNA. My dears! Do yon know I was beginning 
to worry already for fear yon wonld not comet 

Lauea. Whatt Is it really so latet 

SiBENA. Naturally it is late before I worry about 
yon. 

Bisela. We have disappointed at two other fetes 
so as not to miss yours. 

Lauba. Though we understood that you might 
not be able to give it to-night. We heard that you 
were indisposed. 

SiBEKA. If only to rebuke gossippers I should 
have given it though I died. 

Bisela. And we should have been present at it 
even though we had died. 

Lauba. But of course you have not heard the 
newst 

Bisela. Nobody is talking of anything else. 

Lauba. A mysterious personage has arrived in 
the city. Some say that he is a secret ambassador 
from Venice or from Prance. 

Bisela. Others say that he has come to seek a 
wife for the Grand Turk. 

Lauba. They say he is beautiful as an Adonis. 

Bisela. If we could only manage to meet him. 
. . . What a pity! You ought to have invited him 
to your fete. 

SiBENA. It was not necessary, my dears. He him- 
self sent an ambassador begging permission to come. 
He is now in my house, and I have not the slightest 
doubt but that you will be talking to him soon. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 599 

Laxtba. What is that? I told you that we were 
making no mistake when we came. Something was 
Bare to happen. • • . 

BisELA. How we shall be envied to-night t 

Laxtba. Everybody is mad to know hiryi | 

SiBENA. It was no effort for me. It was sufficient 
for him to hear that I was receiving in my house. 

BisELA. Of course . . . the old story. No person 
of importance ever arrives in the city, but it seems 
he runs at once and pays his attentions to you. 

Latjba. I am impatient to see him. . • . Lead us 
to him, on your life ! 

BisELA. Yes. Take us where he is. 

SiBENA. I beg your pardons : Signer Polichinelle 
arriving with his family. , . . But, my dears, you 
will not wait. . . . You need no introductions. 

BisELA. Certainly not. Come, Laura. 

Lauba. Come, Bisela, before the crowd grows too 
great and it is impossible to get near. 

[Lauba and Bisela go out to the right. Pouohi- 

NELLE, the Wipe op Pouchinellb, and 

SiiiViA enter.] 

SntENA. O, Signer Polichinelle I I was afraid you 
were not coming. Until now I really did not know 
whether or not I was to have a fete. 

PouoHiKELLE. It WBS uot my fault; it was my 
wife's. With forty gowns to select from, she can 
never make up her mind which to put on. 

Wipe op Pouohinbllb. Yes, if I were to please 
him I should make an exhibition of myself. . . . 
Why, any suggestion will do^ • . . You see, as it is, 
I have really not had time to put on anything. 

SiBENA. But you never were more beautiful 

PouoHiNELLE. Well, she is not displaying one- 



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600 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

half of lier jewels. If she did she could not support 
the weight of the treasure. 

SntBKA. Who has a better right to be proud than 
you have, Signor Polichinellet What your wife dis- 
plays are the riches which you have acquired by 
your labor. 

WiFB OF PouoHiKBLLB. I toU him this is the time 
for us to enjoy them. He ought to be ambitious and 
rise in the world. . . . Instead, all he thinks of is 
how he can marry his daughter to some trader. 

SiBBNA. O, Signor Polichinelle I Your daughter 
deserves a great deal better than a trader. You 
ought to hold your daughter far too high for trade. 
Such a thing is not to be thought of for one moment. 
You have Ho right to sacrifice her heart to a bargain. 
What do you say, Silvia? 

PoLiCHiNBLLB. She would prefer some waxed-up 
dandy. Instead of listening to my advice, she will 
go on reading novels and poetry. It disgusts me. 

SiLVLi. I always do as my father says, unless it 
is displeasing to my mother or distasteful to me. 

SiBENA. You speak very sensibly. 

WiFB OP PoLicHiNBiiLB. Your father has an idea 
that there is nothing but money to be had in the 
world. 

PouGHiNELLE. I havo au idea that without money 
there is nothing to be had out of the world. Money 
is the one thing which counts. It buys everything. 

SntEKA. Oh, I cannot hear you talk like thatt 
What of virtue, what of intelligence, what of noble 
blood? 

PouoHiifELLs. They all have their price. You 
know it. And nobody knows it better than I do, 
for I have bought heavily in those lines and found 
them reasonable. 

SiBBKA. O, Signor Polichinellet You are in t 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 601 

playfal humor this evening. You know very well 
that money will not buy everything, and if your 
daughter should fall in love with some noble gentle- 
man, you would not dream of attempting to oppose 
her. I can see that you have a father's tender heart. 

PouoHiKEUiB. I have. I would do anything for 
my daughter. 

SiESHA. Even ruin yourself? 

PouoHiKELLE. That would not be anything for 
my daughter. Why, I would steal first, rob, murder 
• • • anything. • • • 

SnosNA. I felt sure that you would know some 
way to recoup yourself. But the fete is crowded 
already. Come with me, Silvia. I have picked out 
a handsome gentleman to dance with you. You will 
make a striking couple • . • ideal! 

[AU go out upon the right except Siokob Poliohi- 

KELLB, who is detained as he is about to do so 

by Cbispin, who enters and accosts him.] 

Crispin. Signor Polichinelle ! With your per- 
mission. ... A word with you. . . . 

PouoHiNBiiLB. Who caUs me? What do you 
want? 

Cbisphst. You don't remember me? It is not sur- 
prising. Time blots out everything, and when what 
has been blotted out was unpleasant, after a while we 
do not remember even the blot, but hurry and paint 
over it with bright colors, like these with which you 
now hide your capers from the world. Why, when 
I knew you, Signor Polichinelle, you had hard work 
to cover your nakedness with a couple of muddy 
rags. 

PoLicHiKELLB. Who are you and where did you 
know me? 



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602 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Cbispik. I was a mere boy then; you were a 
grown man. But you cannot have forgotten so soon 
all those glorious exploits on the high seas, all those 
victories gained over the Turks, to which we con- 
tributed not a little with our heroic strength, both 
pulling chained at the same noble oar in the same 
victorious galley t 

PoLicHiNELLE. Lnpudcut scoimdrel! Sil^ice, 
or . . . 

Crispin. Or you will do with me as you did with 
your first master in Naples, and with your first wife 
in Bologna, and with that usurious Jew in Venice . . . 

PouoHiKBLLE. Sileuco ! Who are you who know 
so much and talk so freely t 

Crispin. lam . . . what you were. One who will 
come to be what you are ... as you have done. 
Not with the same violence as you, for these are 
other days and only madmen commit murder now, 
and lovers, and poor ignorant wretches who fall 
armed upon the wayfarer in dark alleys or along the 
solitary highway. Despicable gallows-birds! Neg- 
ligible! 

PoMOHiNBLLB. What do you want of met Money, 
is it notf Well, we can meet again; this is not the 
place. . . . 

Crispin. Do not trouble yourself about your 
money. I only want to be your friend, your ally, as 
in those days. 

PoocHiNBLLB. What can I do for you? 

Crispin. Nothing; for to-day I am the one who is 
going to do for you, and oblige you with a warn- 
ing. . • . [Directing him to look off at the right.] 
Do you see your daughter there — ^how she is dancing 
with that young gentleman t How coyly she blushes 
at his gallant compliments t Well, that gentleman is 
my master. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 603. 

PouoHiKBLLB. Your master t Then he must be 
an adventurer^ a rogue, a blackguard, like . . . 

Cbispin. Like us . • . you were going to say? 
No, he is more dangerous than we, because, as you 
see, he has a fine figure, and there is a mystery and 
an enchantment in his glance and a sweetness in his 
voice which go straight to the heart and which stir it 
as at the recital of some sad tale. Is not this enough 
to make any woman fall in lovef Never say that I 
did not warn you. Run and separate your daughter 
from this man and never permit her to dance with 
him again, no, nor to speak to him, so long as she 
shall live. 

PouoHiNELLB. Do you mcau to say that he is 
your master and this the way you serve himf 

Crispin. Are you surprised f Have you forgot- 
ten already how it was when you were a servant? 
And I have not planned to assassinate him yet. j 

PoucHiNELLE. You are right. A master is always 
despicable. But what interest have you in serving 
me? 

Cbisfik. To come safe into some good port, as 
we often did when we rowed together at the oar. 
Then sometimes you used to say to me: **You are 
stronger than I, row for me.'* ... In this galley in 
which we are to-day, you are stronger than I. Row 
for me, for your faithful friend of other days, for 
life is a horrible vile galley and I have rowed so long. 

[He goes out hy the way he came in. Dokka Sibbha, 

the Wife of Polichiitelle, Risela, and 

Laxtea re-enter.] 

Laxtba. Only Donna Sirena could have given such 
a fete I 

Risela. To-night she has outstripped all the 
others. 



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604 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

SiSEKA. The presence of so distinguished a gen- 
tleman was an added attraction. 

PoucHiNELLB. But Silvia? Where is Silvia f 
What have you done with my daughtert 

SiBBNA. Do not disturb yourself, Signer Polichi- 
nelle. Your daughter is in excellent hands, and you 
may be assured that she will remain in them as long 
as she is in my house. 

BisELA. There were no attentions for anyone but 
her. 

Laura. All the smiles were for her. 

BisEiiA. And all the sighs. 

PoooHiNELLE. Whosef This mysterious gentle- 
man 'st I do not like it. This must stop. . . . 

SntENA. But Signer Polichinelle ! 

PoocHiNELLB. Away I Let me be ! I know what 
I am doing. [He rushes out.] 

SiBEKA. What is the matter? What infatuation 
is thist 

Wife op Pouchikelle. Now you see what sort of 
man he is. He is going to commit an outrage on 
that gentleman. He wants to marry his daughter to 
a trader, does he — a clinker of worthless coinf He 
wants to make her unhappy for the rest of her life. 

SiRENA. No, anything rather than that ! Bemem- 
ber — ^you are her mother and this is the time for 
you to interpose your authority. . . . 

Wife OF PoocHiNEiiiiE. Look! He has spoken to 
him and the cavalier drops Silvia's hand and retires, 
hanging his head. 

Latjea. And now Signer Polichinelle is attacking 
your daughter. . . . 

SiRBNA. Gomel Gomel Such conduct cannot be 
tolerated in my house. 

BisELA. Signora Polichinelle, in spite of your 
riches we see that you are an unfortunate woman. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 605 

WiFB OP PoucHiNKJcs. Would you believe it, he 
even goes so far sometimes as to turn upon met 

Lauba. Is it possible? And are you a woman to 
submit to thatf 

WiPB OP PoucHiNBLLB. He makos it up after- 
wards by giving me a handsome present. 

SiBBNA. Well, there are husbands of my acquaint- 
ance who would never even think of making up. . • • 

[They aU go out. Leakdsb and Crispin enter.] 

CaispDr. What is this sadness, this dejectiont I 
expected to find you in better spirits. 

Lbanbeb. I was never unfortunate till now; at 
least it never mattered to me whether or not I was 
imf ortunate. Let us fly, Crispin, let us fly from this 
city before anyone can discover us and find out who 
we are. 

Ceisfik. If we fly it will be after everyone has 
discovered us and they are running after us to detain 
us and bring us back in spite of ourselves. It would 
be most discourteous to depart with such scant 
ceremony without bidding our attentive friends 
good-bye. 

Leakdeb. Do not jest, Crispin; I am in despair. 

Ceisfik. So you are. . • • And just when our 
hopes are under fullest sail. 

Leakdeb. What could you expect f You wanted 
me to pretend to be in love, but I have not been able 
to pretend it. 

Cbispik. Why not ? 

Leakdbe. Because I love — ^I love in spirit and in 
truth! 

Cbispin. Silvia? Is that what you are complain- 
ing about f 

Leakdeb. I never believed it possible a man could 
love like this. I never believed that I could ever 



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606 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

love. Through all my wandering life along the dusty 
roadsy I was not only the one who passed, I was the 
one who fled, the enemy of the harvest and the field, 
the enemy of man, enemy of sunshine and the day. 
Sometimes the fruit of the wayside tree, stolen, not 
given, left some savor of joy on my parched lips, and 
sometimes, after many a bitter day, resting at night 
beneath the stars, the calm repose of heaven would 
invite and soothe me to a dream of something that 
might be in my life like that calm night sky, brooding 
infinite over my soul — serene! And so to-night, in 
the enchantment of this fete ... it seemed to me as 
if there had come a calm, a peace into my life . • . 
and I was dreaming. . . . Ah! How I did dream! 
But to-morrow it wUl be again the bitter flight with 
justice at our heels • • . and I cannot bear that they 
should take me here where she is, and where she may 
ever have cause to be ashamed at having known me. 

Cbisfin. Why, I thought that you had been re- 
ceived with favor. . . . And I was not the only one 
who noticed it. Donna Sirena and our good friends, 
the Captain and the poet, have been most eloquent in 
your praises. To that rare excellent mother, the 
wife of Polichinelle, who thinks of nothing but how 
she can relate herseU by marriage to some nobleman, 
yod have seemed the son-in-law of her dreams. As 
for Signer Polichinelle . . . 

Lbandbb. He knows ... he suspects • . . 

Cbisfik. Naturally. It is not so easy to deceive 
Signer Polichinelle as it is an ordinary man. An old 
fox like him has to be cheated truthfully. I decided 
that the best thing for us to do was to tell him 
everything. 

ISRAITDEEi. How sot 

Crispik. Obviously. He knows me of old. When 
I told him that you were my master, he rightly sup- 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 607 

posed that the master must be worthy of the man. 
And upon my part in appreciation of his confidence 
I warned him not to permit you under any circum- 
stances to come near to or speak to his daughter. 

Leander. You did! Then what have I to hope? 

Obisfik. You are a fool I Why, that Signer 
Polichinelle will exert all his authority to prevent 
you from seeing her. 

Lbakdbb. I do not understand. 

Cbispik. In that way he will become our most 
powerful ally, for if he opposes it, that will be 
enough to make his wife take the opposite side, and 
the daughter will fall in love with you madly. You 
have no idea what a young and beautiful daughter 
of a rich father, who has been brought up to the 
gratification of her every whim, can do when she 
finds out that for the first time in her life somebody 
is opposing her wishes. I am certain that this very 
night, before the fete is over, she will find some way 
of eluding the vigilance of her father at whatever 
cost, and return to speak with you. 

liBAKDEB. But can't you see that Signer Polichi- 
nelle is nothing to me ; no, nor the wide world, either t 
It is she, only she ... it is to her that I am unwill- 
ing to appear unworthy or mean ... it is to her — 
to her that I cannot lie. 

Cbispik. Bah I Enough of this nonsense I Don 't 
tell me that. It is too late to draw back. Think what 
will happen if we vacillate now and hesitate in going 
on. You say that you have fallen in lovef Well, 
this real love will do us better than if it were put on. 
Otherwise you would have wanted to get through 
with it too quickly. If insolence and effrontery are 
the only qualities which are of use elsewhere, in love 
a faint suggestion of timidity is of advantage to a 
man. Timidity in a man always makes the woman 



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608 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

bolder. If you don't believe it, here is the innocent 
Silvia now, skoUdng in the shadows and only wait- 
ing for a chance to come near until I retire or am 
concealed. 

Lbandbb. Silvia, do you say t 

Gbispin. Hush! You may frighten her. When 
she is with you, remember, discretion. . . • only a 
few words, very few. . . . Adore her, admire her, 
contemplate her, and let the enchantment of this 
night of pallid blue speak for you, propitious as it 
is to love, and whisper to her in the music whose 
soft notes die away amid the foliage and fall upon 
our ears like sad overtones of this festival of joy. 

Leakdeb. Do not trifle, Crispin. Do not trifle 
with my love. It will be my death. 

Crispin. Why should I trifle with itf I know, 
too, it is not always well to grovel on the ground. 
Sometimes we must soar and mount up into the sky 
better to dominate the earth. Mount now and soar 
. . . and I will grovel still. The world lies in our 
hands. 

[He goes out to the right. Silvia enters.] 

Leakdeb. Silvia! 

Silvia. Is it youf You must pardon me. I did 
not expect to find you here. 

Leakdeb. I fly from the festival I am saddened 
by this joy. 

Silvia. What? You, too? 

Leakdeb. Too, you say? Does joy sadden yon, 
too? . . . 

Silvia. My father is angry with me. He never 
spoke to me like this before. And he was discour- 
teous to you. Will you forgive him? 

Lbandbb. Yes. I forgive him everything. But 
you must not make him angry on my account. Be- 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 609 

turn to the company. They will be looking for you. 
If they find you here with me. . . . 

SiiiViA. Tou are right. But you must come, too. 
Why should you be so sad? 

Leanbeb. Noy I must slip away without any- 
body's seeing me, without their knowing I am gone. 
... I must go far away. 

SiiiYiA. Whatf But you have important business 
in the city. ... I know you have. . . . Tou will 
have to stay a long, long time. 

Leakdeb. No, no. Not another day, not another 
hour. 

Silvia. But then. . . . You have not lied to met 

Leakdse. Liedt Nol . . . Don't say that I have 
lied. ... No ; this is the one truth of my whole life, 
—this dream from which there should be no awak- 
ening. 

[The music of a song heard in the distance con- 
tinues until the curtain falls.] 

Silvia. It is Harlequin, singing. . . . What is the 
matter? You are crying. Is it the music which 
makes you cryt Why wUl you not tell me what it 
is that makes you cryt 

Lbandeb. What makes me cryt The song will 
tell you. Listen to the song. 

Silvia. We can hear only the music; the words 
are lost, it is so far away. But don't you know 
itt It is a song to the silence of the night. It 
is called the '^Kingdom of the Soul." You must 
know it. 

Leandeb. Say it over to me. . . . 

Silvia. The amorous night above the silent lover 
Across the blue heaven spreads a nuptial veil. 
The night has strewn its diamonds on the cover 
Of a moonlit sky in drowsy August pale. 
The garden in the shade now knows no color. 



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610 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Deep in the shades of its obscurity 

Lightly the leaflets flutter, sweetly smells the flower. 

And love broods there in silent sympathy. 

You voices which sigh, you voices which sing. 

You voices which whisper sweet phrases of love. 

Intruders you are and a blasphemous thing. 

Like an oath at night-tide in a prayer sped above. 

Great Spirit of Silence, whom I adore. 

There is in your silence the ineffable voice 

Of those who died loving in silence of yore, 

Of those who were silent and died of their love; 

Of those in their lives whose great love was such 

They were unable to tell it, their love was so much I 

Yours are the voices which nightly I hear. 

Whispers of love and eternity near. 

Mother of my soul, the light of this star. 

Is it not the light of your eyes. 
Which, like a drop of God's blood. 

Trembles in the night 

And fades at sunrise f 
Tell him whom I love, I never shall love 

More than him on the earth. 
And when he fades away, light of my eyes, 

I shall kiss at sunrise 

But the light of thy star! 
Leakdeb. Mother of my soul, I never have loved 

More than you on the earth. 
And when you fade away, light of my eyes, 

I shall kiss at sunrise 

The Ught of thy star. 

[They remain in silence, embracing and gassing 
into each other's eyes.] 

Crispin. [Who appears at the right — to himself.] 
Poesy and night and madness of the lover . . . 

All has to serve us that to our net shall come. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 611 

The victory is sure! Courage, charge and over! 
Who shidl overcome us when love heats the drumt 
[Silvia and Leakdeb move slowly off to the right, 
locked in each other's arms. Obispik follows them 
in silence without being seen. Slowly the 

OUBTAIK DBSOSNDS. 



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Acrm 

A room in Lbandeb's house. 

CbjspiSj the Captain and HASLSQinK enter from the 

right. 

Crispin. Enter, gentlemen, and be seated. You 
will take something t I will give orders to have it 
brought. Hello there! Ho! 

Captain. No. By no means. We can accept 
nothing. 

Hablbquin. We came merely to offer our services 
to your master after what we have just heard. 

Crispin. Incredible treachery, which, believe me, 
shall not be suffered to remain unpunished. I prom- 
ise you if Signer Polichinelle ever puts hunsdf 
within the reach of my hands — 

HABiiEQxnN. Ah! Now you see what an advan- 
tage is possessed by us poets ! I have him always 
within the reach of my verses. ... Oh! The ter- 
rible satire I am thinking of writing against him I 
. . . The cut-throat! Old reprobate! 

Captain. But you say your master was not so 
much as even wounded f 

Crispin. But it might have killed him just the 
same. Imagine I Set upon by a dozen ruffians abso- 
lutely without warning. . . . Thanks, though, to his 
bravery, to his skill, to my cries. . . . 

Harlequin. You say that it happened at night 
as your master was talking to Silvia over the wall 
of her garden? 

Crispin. Naturally, my master had already been 
advised of what might happen. . . . But you know 

612 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 613 

what sort of man he is. He is not a person to be 
frightened at anything. 

Captaik. He ought to have notified ns. 

Hablbquik. He ought, certainly, to have notified 
the Captain. He would have been delighted to have 
gone with him. 

Cbisfik. You know what my master is. He is a 
host in himself. 

Captain. But you say that he caught one of the 
ruffians by the nape of tiie neck, and the rascal con- 
fessed that it had all been planned and arranged by 
Signer Polichinelle beforehand so as to rid him- 
self of your master? . . . 

Cbisfik. Who else could have had any interest 
in itf His daughter is in love with my master; her 
father wants to marry her to suit himself. My mas- 
ter is opposing his plans, and Signer Polichinelle 
has known all his life how to get rid of disturb- 
ances. DidnH he become a widower twice in a very 
short timet Hasn't he inherited all that his rela- 
tives had, irrespective of age, whether they were 
older or younger than he? Everybody knows it; 
nobody wUl say that I do him injustice. . . . Ah! the 
riches of Signer Polichinelle are an affront to our 
intelligence, a discouragement to honest labor. A 
man like Signer Polichinelle could remaiQ rich only 
among a base and degenerate people. 

HABiiEQxnK. I agree with you. I mean to say all 
this in my satire— of course, without mentioning 
his name. Poetry does not admit of such license. 

Cbisfik. Much good, then, your satire will do ! 

Captaik. Leave him to me! Leave him to me! 
I promise you if he once puts himself within the 
reach of my sword — ^ah! But I am confident he 
never will. 

Cbisfik. My master would never consent to have 



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614 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

an insult offered to Signor Polichinelle. After all, 
he is Silvia's father. The point is to have people in 
the city understand that an attempt has been made 
to assassinate my master. Is that old fox to be 
allowed to stifle the honest affection, the generous 
passion of his daughter? It is impossible. 

Hableqxjik. It is impossible. Love will find a 
way. 

Cbjsbis. If my master had been some impecu- 
nious beggar. . . . Tell me, isn't Signor Polidiinelle 
the one who ought to be congratulated that my mas- 
ter has condescended to fall in love with his daugh- 
ter, and is willing to accept him for his f ather-in- 
lawt My master, who has rejected the advances of 
so many damsels of high decree; my master, for 
whom over four princesses have committed I know 
not how many absurdities. . . . But who is heret 
[Looking towards the right.] Ah, Columbine I 
Come, in, my beautiful Columbine ! Do not be afraid. 
[Columbine enters from the right.] We are all 
your friends, and our mutual friendship will pro- 
tect you from our mutual admiration. 

Columbine. Donna Sirena has sent me for news 
of your master. It was scarcely day when Silvia 
came to our house and confided everything that had 
happened to my mistress. She says that she will 
never return to her father, nor leave my mistress, 
unless it is to become the bride of Signor Leander. 

Crispin. Does she say thatf Oh, noble girl! Oh, 
constant, true-hearted lover! 

Hableqxhn. What an epithalamium I intend to 
write for their wedding! 

Columbine. Silvia is positive that Leander is 
wounded. . . . She heard the clash of swords be- 
neath the balcony, your cries for help; then she fell 
senseless and they found her in a swoon at day- 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 615 

break. Tell me how Signer Leander is, for she is 
beside herself with anxiety to hear and my lady also 
is much distressed. 

Crispin. Tell her that my master escaped with 
his life only through the unutterable power of love. 
Tell her that he is dying now only from the incurable 
wounds of love. TeU her that to the last. . . . 
[Seeing LEAin>EB approach.] Ah, but here he is 
himself, and he will be able to give you later news 
than I. 

[Leandeb enters.] 

Captain. [Embracing him.] My dear, good 
friend I 

Hablbqxtin. [Embracing him.] My friend, and 
master I 

Columbine. Ah, Signer Leander, what happi- 
ness ! You are safe I 

Leandeb. Whatf How did you knowf . . . 

Cbisfin. Nothing else is talked about in the city. 
People gather in groups in the squares murmuring 
vengeance and venting imprecations upon Signer 
Polichinelle. 

Leandeb. What is thist 

Captain. He had better not dare to attempt your 
life a second time. 

HABLEQxnN. He had better not dare to attempt to 
arrest the true course of your love. 

Columbine. It would be useless. Silvia is in my 
mistress' house and she swears she will leave it only 
to become your bride. 

Leandeb. Silvia in your house t But her father 
• • • 

Columbine. Signer Polichinelle has all he can 
do to take care of himself. 



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616 TEE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Captaik. Whatt I knew that man would be up 
to something. Oh, of what base uses money is 
capable! 

Hablbqtjin. It is capable of everything but love ; 
of that it is incapable. 

CoLUMBiKB. He tried to have you assassinated 
dishonorably in the dark. 

Crispin. By twelve cut-throats. Twelve. ... I 
counted them. 

LEAin)EB. I made out only three or four. 

Gbispin. My master will end by telling you that 
there was no danger so as not to receive credit for 
his coohiess and his bravery — ^but I saw it. There 
were twelve; twelve armed to the teeth, prepared to 
do murder. ... It seemed impossible that he could 
escape with his life. 

CoLUBCBiNE. I must ruu and calm Silvia and my 
mistress. 

Gbispik. Listen, Columbine. As to Silvia . . . 
wouldn't it be as well, perhaps, not to calm hert 

CoLUBCBiNE. Leave that to my mistress. Silvia 
is convinced that your master is dead, and although 
Donna Sirena is making the most unheard of efforts 
to console her, it will not be long before she is here 
in spite of the consequences. 

Crispin. I ought to have known of what your 
mistress was capable. 

Captain. We must be going, too; there is noth- 
ing here that we can do. The point is to arouse the 
indignation of the people against Signer Polichi- 
nelle. 

HABLBQxnN. We shall stone his house; we shall 
raise the whole city. . . . Until today not a single 
man has dared to lift his hand against him; today, 
then, we will all dare to do it together. There is 
an uplift, a moral earnestness in a crowd. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 617 

CoLTJHBiKB. He will come creeping on his knees 
and beg yon to accept his daughter as your wife. 

Gbisfin. Yes, yes, he will indeed! . . • Bnn^ 
friends, run; the life of my master is not secure — 
a man who has once made up his mind to assassinate 
him is not likely to be turned aside for a trifle. 

Captaik. Have no fear . . . my good friend 

Hablsqxtik. My friend and master! 

CoLUMBiNB. Signer Leander. 

Lbandbb. Thanks to you all, my friends • . • my 
loyal friends. 

[All go out hut Leakdeb and Gbisfin.] 

Lbandbb. What is this, now, Crispin t What are 
you trying to dot Where do you expect to come 
out with aJfl your liest Do you faiow what I believe! 
You paid those fellows yourself; it was your idea. 
I should have got off badly enough among so 
many if they had been in earnest. 

Cbisfen. Have you the temerity to reproach me 
when I precipitate the fulfilment of your desires so 
skilfully? 

Lbandbb. No, Crispin, no. You know you do not. 
I love Silvia. I am resolved : I shall never win her 
love through deception, come what may. 

Cbisfin. You know very well, then, what will 
come. ... Do you call it love to sit down and resign 
yourself to losing what you love for the sake of these 
quibbles of conscience t • . . Silvia herself would 
not thank you for it. 

Lbandbb. What do you meant If she once learns 
who I am. . . . 

Cbispin. By the time she finds out you will no 
longer be the one that you are. You will be her 
husband then, her beloved husband, who is every- 
thing that is noble and faithful and true and what- 
efver else you like besides, or that her heart desires. 



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618 TEE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Once you are master of her heart . . . and her for- 
tune . • . will you not be a complete and perfect 
gentleman 1 Tou will not be like Signer Polidiinelley 
who, with all his wealth which permits him so many 
luxuries, has not yet been able to permit himself the 
luxury of being honest. . . . Deceit is natural to 
him, but with you it was only necessity. ... If yon 
hadn't had me at your side you would have starved 
yourself to death before this out of pure conscien- 
tiousness. Ah, do you suppose that if I had thought 
for a moment that you were a man of another sort, 
I would have been satisfied to devote your abilities 
to love? . . . No, I would have put you into politics, 
and not merely the fortune of Signor Polichinelle 
would have been ours, but a chastened and admiring 
world. . . . But you are not ambitious. You will be 
satisfied to be happy. 

Leandeb. But can't you see that no good, no hap- 
piness, can come out of thist If I could lie so as 
to make her love me and in that way become rich, 
then it could only be because I did not love. And 
if I did not love, then how could I be happy? And 
if I love, how can I lie? 

Cbispin. Don 't lie, then. Love, love passionately, 
entirely with your whole heart and soiQ. Put your 
love before everything else upon earth. Guard and 
protect it. A lover does not lie when he keeps to 
himself what he thinks might prejudice the blind 
affection of his mistress. 

Leandeb. These are subtleties, Crispin. 

Cbispin. Which you would have known all about 
before if you had really been in love. Love is all 
subtleties and the greatest subtlety of them all is 
not that lovers deceive others — ^it is that they can so 
easily deceive themselves. 

Leandeb. I do not deceive myself, Crispin. I am 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 619 

not one of those men who, when they have sold their 
conscience, think that they have also been able to 
dispose of their intelligence as welL 

Cbispin. That is the reason I said yon wonld 
never make a good politician. You are right. For 
the intelligence is the conscience of truth, and the 
man who parts with that among the lies of this life 
is as one who has lost himself. He is without com- 
pass or saiL He will never be able to find himself 
again nor know himself, but become in all his being 
just one more living lie. 

Leakdeb. Where did you leam all these things, 
Crispin? 

Cmspin. I meditated a little while in the galleys, 
where this conscience of my intelligence accused me 
of having been more of a fool than a knave. If I 
had had more knavery and less stupidity, instead 
of rowing I might have commanded the ship. So I 
swore never again to return to the oar. You can 
see now what I am willing to do for your sake since 
I am on the point of breaking my oath. 

Leakdsb. In what way? 

Crispin. Our situation has become desperate; we 
have exhausted our credit, and our dupes begin to 
demand something more substantial than talk: the 
innkeeper who entertained us so long with such mu- 
nificence, expecting that you would receive your 
remittances; Signer Pantaloon, who, hearing of the 
credit extended by the innkeeper, advanced us what- 
ever was necessary to install us sumptuously in this 
house — ^tradesmen of every description, who did not 
hesitate to provide us with every luxury, dazzled by 
such display; Donna Sirena herself, who has lent 
US her invaluable good offices in your love affair . . . 
they have all only asked what was reasonable; it 
would be unjust to expect more of them or to corn- 



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620 TEE BONDS OF INTEREST 

plain of such delightful people. . . . The name of 
this fair city shall ever be engraven upon my heart 
in letters of gold; from this hour I claim it as my 
adopted mother 1 But more than this, have you for- 
gotten that they have been searching for us in other 
parts and following on our trail t Can it be that all 
those glorious exploits of Mantua and Florence have 
been forgotten? Don^t you recall that famous law- 
suit in Bologna t Three thousand two hundred 
pages of testimony taken against us already before 
we withdrew in alarm at the sight of such prodigious, 
expansive ability 1 Do you imagine that it has not 
continued to grow under the pen of that learned doc- 
tor and jurist, who has taken it under his wing? 
How many whereases and theref ores must there now 
be therefore, whereas they are all there for no good? 
Do you still doubt? Do you still hesitate and re- 
prove me because I give the battle today which is to 
decide our fate forever at a single blow? 

Leakdeb. Let us fly t 

Crispin. No! Let the despairing fly! This day 
decides. We challenge fortune. ... I have given 
you love; give me life! 

Leandeb. But how can we save ourselves t What 
can I do? Tell me. 

Crispin. Nothing yet. It will be enough to accept 
what others offer. . . . We have intertwined our- 
selves with the interests of many, and the bonds of 
interest will prove our salvation. 

[Donna Sirena enters.] 

SiRENA. Have I your permission, Signer Le- 
ander? 

Leander. Donna Sirena! What? You in my 
house? 

Sirena. I am conscious of the risk I am running 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 621 

— ^the gossip of evil tongaes. What? Donna Sirena 
in the house of a young and gallant gentleman? . , • 

Crispin. My master will know how to avoid all 
cause of scandal, if any indeed could attach to your 
name. 

SiBBKA. Your master? I would not trust him. 
Men are so boastful! But it is useless to complain. 
What, sir, is this talk about an attempt to kill you 
last night? I haven't heard another thing since I 
got up in the morning. . . . And Silvia ! The poor 
child! How she loves you! I would give a great 
deal to know what it was that you ever did to make 
her fall in love with you like tiiat. 

Cbispin. My master feels that it was what you 
did. He owes it all to you. . . . 

SiBENA. I should be the last one to deny that he 
owes me anything; I have always tried to speak 
well of him, a thing I had no right to do, not know- 
ing him sufficiently. I have gone to great lengths 
in his service. Now if you are false to your 
promise. . . . 

Gbispik. You do not doubt my master? Have 
you not the papers signed in his own hand? 

SiBBKA. The hand is a good one and so is the 
name. I donH bother about them. I know what it 
is to trust and I know that Signer Leander will pay 
me what he owes. But to-day has been a bitter day 
for me and if you could let me have today one-half 
of what you have promised, I would willingly forego 
the other half. 

Cbispik. To-day, you say? 

SiBBNA. A day of tribulations I Ajid what makes 
it worse it is twenty years ago to-day that my second 
husband died, who was my first — ^yes, my only love. 

Crispin. May he rest in peace with all the honors 
of the first I 



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622 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

SnusNA. The first was forced on me by my father. 
I never loved hun, but in spite of it he insisted upon 
being faithful to me. 

CmspiN. What knowledge you have of men, 
Donna Sirena! 

SiBEKA. But let us leave these recollections, 
which are depressing, and turn to hope. Would 
you believe itt Silvia insisted upon coming here 
with me. 

Leandeb. Here? To this house t 

SiBENA. Where do you suppose it was that she 
wanted to come? What do you say to that? What 
would Signer Polichinelle say? With all the dty 
roused against him, there would be nothing for him 
to do but to get you married. 

Leandeb. No, no ; don't let her come. . . . 

Cbispin. Hush! You know my master has a 
way of not saying what he means. 

SiBENA. I know. . . • What would he give to see 
Silvia at his side, never to be separated from him 
more? 

Cfiisprar. What would he give? You don't know 
what he would givel 

SmENA. That is the reason I ask. 

Cbispin. Ahl Donna Sirena. ... If my master 
becomes the husband of Silvia to-day, to-day he will 
pay you everything that he has promised you. 

SiBENA. ^d if he does not? 

Cbispin. Then . . . you lose everything. Suit 
yourself. 

Leandeb. Silence, Crispin, silence I Enough! I 
cannot submit iJb have my love treated as a bargain. 
Go, Donna Sirena 1 Say to Silvia that she must re- 
turn to her father's house, that under no circum- 
stances is she ever to enter mine; that she must 
forget me forever. I shall fly and hide myself in the 



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TEE BONDS OF INTEREST 623 

desert places of the earth, where no man shall see 
me, no, nor so much as know my name. . . . My 
namet I wonder — have I a namet • 

Obisfik. Will you be silent t 

SiBBNA. What is the matter with himt What 
I>aroxysm is thist Betnm to your senses. Gome 
to your proper mind? How? Benounce so glorious 
an enterprise for nothing? You are not the only 
person who is to be considered. Bemember that 
there are others who have put their confidence in 
you. A lady of quality who has exposed herself for 
your sake is not to be betrayed with impunity. You 
cannot do such a thing. You will not be so foolish. 
You will marry Silvia or there will be one who will 
find a way to bring you to a reckoning for all your 
impostures. I am not so defenceless in the world as 
you may think, Signer Leander. 

Cbispin. Donna Sirena is right. But believe me, 
this fit of my master's — ^he is offended by your re- 
proaches, your want of confidence. 

SntENA. I don't want confidence in your master. 
And I might as well say it — ^I don't want confidence 
in Signer Polichinelle. He is not a man to be trifled 
with, either. After the outcry which you raised 
against him by your stratagem of last night. . • . - 

Crispin. Stratagem, did you say? 

SiRBNA. Bah! Everybody knows it. One of the 
rascals was a relative of mine, and among the others 
I had connections. . • . Very well, sirs, very well I 
Signer Polichinelle has not been asleep. It is said 
in the city that he has given information as to who 
you are to Justice, and on what grounds you may be 
apprehended. It is said that a process has arrived 
to-day from Bologna. . . . 

Cbisfin. And a devil of a doctor with it? Three 
thousand nine hundred folios. . • . 



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624 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

SiBBKA. So it is said and on good authority — you 
see that there is no time to lose. 

Gbisfin. Who is losing and who is wasting time 
but yout Betum, return at once to your house! 
Say to Silvia — 

SiBBNA. Silvia? Silvia is here. She came along 
with me and Columbine as one of the attendants in 
my train. She is waiting in the antechamber. I told 
her that you were wounded horribly. . . . 

Lbakdbb. Ohy my Silvia! 

SiBBNA. She has reconciled herself to your death. 
• • . She hopes for nothing else. . • . She expects 
nothing else. . . . She thinks nothing of what she 
risks in coming here to see you. Wellt Are we 
friends t 

Cbispin. You are adorable. [To Lbakdbb.] Quick I 
Lie down here. Stretch yourself out in this dudr. 
Seem sick . . . suffer . . . faint ... Be down- 
hearted. And remember, if I am not satisfied 
with the appearance, I will substitute the reality. 
[Threatening him and forcing him into a chairj] 

Lbandeb. Yes, I am in your power. I see it; I 
know it. . . . But Silvia shall never be! . . . Yes, 
let me see her. Tell her to come in. I shall save 
her in spite of you, in spite of everything, in spite 
even of herself! 

Gbisfin. You know my master has a way of not 
meaning what he says. 

SiBENA. I never thought him such a f ooL Gome 
with me. [She goes out tuith Gbisfik. Silvia 
enters.] 

Leakdbb. Silvia! My Silvia! 

Silvia. But, aren't you woundedt 

Leandbb. No, don't you sect • • • It was a lie, 
another lie to bring you here. But don't be afraid. 
Your father will come soon; soon you will leave this 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 625 

house with him without having any cause to reproach 
me. ... Ah! None but that I have disturbed the 
serenity of your soul with an illusion of love which 
will be to you in the future no more than the remem- 
brance of a dark and evil dream 1 

Silvia. But Leander? Then your love was not 
real! 

Leandeb. My love was, yes. . . . That is why I 
could not deceive you. Leave this place at once • . . 
before anybody but those who brought you here dis- 
covers that you came. 

Silvia. What are you afraid of? Am I not safe 
in your house? I was not afraid to come. . . . What 
harm can happen to me at your side? 

Lbandbb. You are right. None. My love will 
protect you even from your innocence. 

Silvia. I can never go back to my father's house 
— ^not after the horrible thing which he did last 
night. 

Leakdeb. No, Silvia, do not blame your father. 
It was not his fault; it was another deception, an- 
other lie. . . . Ply from me; forget this miserable 
adventurer, this nameless outcast, a fugitive from 
justice. • • • 

Silvia. No, it isn't true. No. It is the conduct 
of my father which makes me unworthy of your love. 
That is what it is. I see it all now. I understand 
you. . . . Ay, for me I 

Leandeb. Silvia! My Silvia! How cruel your 
sweet words are! How cruel this noble confidence 
of your heart, so innocent of evil and of life ! 

[Cbispik enters, running.] 

CBispnr. Master! Master! Signer Polichinelle 
is coming! 

Silvia. My father! 



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626 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Lran0eb. It doesn't matter. I shall lead 70a to 
him with my own hand. 

Cbisfik. But he is not coming alone. There is a 
great crowd with him; the officers of justice . . . 

Leandeb. Whatt Ah! If they should find you 
here? In my house ! [To Cbisfin.] I see it all now. 
You have told them. . . • But you shall not succeed 
in your design. 

Cbispin. It No. Certainly not! For this time 
this is in earnest and nothing can save us now. 

Lbakdeb. No, not us. Nor shall I try. . . • But 
her. . . . Yes! Hide her, conceal her. . . . We must 
secrete her here. 

Silvia. But yout 

Leakdeb. Have no fear. Quick! They are on the 
stair. [He hides Selvia in a room at the rear, tneafi- 
while saying to Crispin.] See what these fellows 
want. On your life let no man set his foot within 
this room after I am gone! . . . The game is up I 
... It is the end for me. [He runs to the ivindow.} 

Cbispin. [holding him back.] Master! Master! 
Hold! Control yourself. Come to your senses. 
Don't throw your life away! 

Leandeb. I am not throwing my life away. . . . 
There is no escape. ... I am saving her. . . • [He 
climbs through the window and rapidly up outside 
and disappears.] 

Cbispin. Master! Master! H'm! Not so bad- 
after all. I thought he was going to dash himself to 
pieces on the ground. Instead he has climbed higher 
. . . there is hope yet ... he may yet learn to fly. 
... It is his region, the clouds. . . . Now I to mine, 
the firm ground. And more need than ever that I 
should make certain that it is solid beneath my feet 
[He seats himself complacently in an armchair.] 

PouoHiNELLE. [Without, to thosc who are with 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 627 

him.] Guard the doors t Let no man escape! No, 
nor woman either. . . . Nor dog nor cat! 

Innksspeb. Where are theyt Where are these 
bandits t These assassins? 

Pantaloon, Justice! Justice! My money! My 
money! 

[SiONOB PouoHiNELLEy the Innkeefeb, Sionob 
Pantaloon, the Captain, Hablbqtjin, the Dootob, 
the Seobetaby, and two Constables enter, bearing 
in their hands enormous scrolls and protocols, or 
papers of the suit. All enter from the right in the 
order named. The Dootob and the Seobetaby pass 
at once to the table and prepare to take testimony. 
The scrolls when unroUed at full length stretch 
out interminably upon the floor. A mass of papers 
covers the table. Upon these the Dootob and Sbo- 
retary write with prodigious zeal and rapidity, 
except at st^h times as the actions are suspended 
or as may be indicated othervnse during the prog- 
ress of the scene. Such rolls and papers as cannot 
be accommodated upon the table or on the floor 
the two Constables retain in their hands, remain- 
ing standing for that purpose at the rear.] 

Captain. But can this be possible, Crispin? 

Hablequin. Is it possible that such a thing can 
be? 

Pantaloon. Justice! Justice! My money! My 
money! 

Innkeepeb. Seize them. . • . Put them in irons. 

Pantaloon. Don^t let them escape! Don't let 
fhem escape! 

Cbisfin. What? How is this? Who dares to 
desecrate with impious clamor the house of a gen- 
tleman and a cavalier? Oh, you may congrattdate 
yourselves that my master is not at home I 



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628 TEE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Pantaloon. Silence I Silence! For yon are his 
accomplice and yon will be held to answer to the 
same reckoning as he. 

Innkbbpeb. Accomplice, did yon say t As gnilty 
as his pretended master . . • for he was the one who 
deceived me. 

Captain. What is the meaning of this, Crispint 

Hablbqxtin. Is there any tmth in what these peo- 
ple sayt 

PouoHiNEiiLB. What have yon to say for your- 
self now, Crispint Yon thought you were a clever 
rogue to cut up your capers with met I tried to 
murder your master, did It I am an old miser who 
is battening on his daughter's heart t All the dty is 
stirred up against me, is it, heaping me with insults t 
Well, we shall see. 

Pantaloon. Leave him to us, Signer PolichineUe, 
for this is our affair. After all, you have lost noth- 
ing. But I — all my wealth which I lent him without 
security. lamruinedfor therest of mylifel What 
will become of met 

Innkeepeb. What will become of me, tell me that, 
when I spent what I never had and even ran into 
debt so that he might be served — as I thought — ^in a 
manner befitting his station t It was my destruction 
— ^my ruin. 

Captain. We too were horribly deceived. What 
will be said of me when it is known that I have put 
my sword at the disposition of an adventurer t 

HABLBQxnN. And of me, when I have dedicated 
sonnet after sonnet to his praise, just as if he had 
been any ordinary gentleman t 

PouoHiNELLE. Ha! Ha! Ha! 

Pantaloon. Yes, laugh, laugh, that is ri^t . , . 
Yon have lost nothing. 

Innkbepeb. Nobody robbed you . . . 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 629 

Paktalook. To work! To work I Where is the 
other villaint 

Innkbefkb. Better see what there is in the house 
first, • • • 

Cbisfik. Slowly, slowly, gentlemen. ... If you 
advance one other step . • . [Threatening them with 
his sword.] 

Paktaloon. What! You threaten ust Againt 
Is such a thing to be endured t Justice t Justice 1 

Innkxepsb. Yes, justice 1 

DooTOB. Gentlemen— unless you listen to me we 
shall get nowhere. ... No man may take justice 
into his own hands, inasmuch as justice is not haste 
nor oppression nor vengeance, nor act of malice. 
SummtAm jus, summum injuria; the more wrong, 
the more justice. Justice is all wisdom and wisdom 
is all order, and order is all reason, and reason is all 
procedure, and procedure is all logic. Barbara, 
Celarent, Darii, Perio, Baralipton, deposit all your 
wrongs and all your disputations with me, for if they 
are to be of any validity they must all form a part of 
this process which I have brought in these protocols 
vnth me. 

Cbispin. The devil, you say! Hasn't it grown 
enough already! 

DooTOB. Herein are set down and inscribed 
divers other offenses of these defendants, whereunto 
must be added and conjoined each and every one of 
those of which you may accuse them now. And I 
must be the advocate in all of them, for that is the 
only way in which it will be possible for you to ob- 
tain satisfaction and justice. Write, Signer Secre- 
tary, and let the said complainants depose. 

Pantaloon. It would be better to settle our dif- 
ferences among ourselves. You know what justice is. 

Innkespeb. Write nothing. It will only be mak- 



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630 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

ing the wMte blax^, and in the end we shall be left 
without our money and these rogues without punish- 
ment. 

Pantaloon. Exactly. . . . My money! My money 1 
And justice afterwards. 

DooTOB. You unlearned, you uncivil, you ignorant 
generation! What do you know of justice? It is 
not enough for you to say that you have suffered a 
wrong, unless there be plainly apparent therein an 
intention to make you suffer that wrong; that is to 
say, fraud or deceit, which are not the same, although 
they are confounded in the popular acceptation. But 
I say unto you that only in the single case . . . 

Pantaloon. Enough! Enough! You will end by 
telling us that we are the guilty ones. 

Doctor. What else am I to think when you will 
persist in denying such a plain and obvious fact? 

Innkeepeb. I like that. Good! We were robbed. 
Do you want any plainer or more obvious fact? 

DooTOB. Know, then, that robbery is not the same 
as theft, much less is it the same as fraud or deceit, 
which again are not the same as aforesaid. Prom 
the laws of the Twelve Tables down to Justinian, to 
Tribonian, to Emilian, to Triberian . . . 

Pantaloon. We shall be cheated out of our 
money. . . . There is no one who can reason me out 
of that. 

PoLiCHiNBLLE. The Siguor Doctor is right. We 
can safely leave the matter to him and everything 
will be attended to in the process. 

DocTOB. Then write. Signer Secretary, write. 

Cbispin. Who wants to listen to met 

Pantaloon. No one, no one. Let that rascal be 
quiet. . . . Silence for that villain! 

Innkeepeb. You will have a chance to talk soon 
enough when you don't want to. 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 631 

DocTOB. He will speak at the proper moment^ for 
justice requires that everybody should be afforded 
an opportunity to talk. . . . Write, write. In the 
city of ... in the matter of . . . . But it would cer- 
tainly not be amiss if we proceeded first to an inven- 
tory of whatever there is in the house. 

Crispin. [Before the door.] It certainly would 
be a miss. . . . 

Doctor. Thence to progress to the deposit of 
security on the part of the complainants, so that 
there may be no question as to their good faith when 
they assert that they have suffered a loss. Two 
thousand crowns will be sufficient from each of you 
to be secured by guarantees upon all your goods and 
chattels. 

Pantaloon. What is that t Two thousand crowns 
from ust 

Doctor. I ought to make it eight; however, as 
you are persons of responsibility, I take that fact 
into account. I allow nothing to escape me. 

Innkeeper. Hold I And write no more! We 
cannot submit to this. 

Doctor. What? Do you threaten justice? Open 
a separate process for battery and the hand of vio- 
lence raised against an officer of the law in full 
performance of his duties. 

Pantaloon. This man will be the ruin of us. 

Innkeeper. He is mad. 

Doctor. What? Do you call me a man and mad? 
Speak with more respect. Write I Write! Open 
two more counts. There was also an assault by 
word of mouth. . . . 

Crispin. Now see what you have done through 
not listening to me. 

Pantaloon. Talk, talk, for heaven *s sake ! Talk I 



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632 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Anything would be better than what is happening to 
us now. 

Crispin. Then shut off this fellow, for the love 
of mercy. He is raising up a mountain with his 
protocols. 

Pantaloon. Stop! Stop, I say! 

Innkebpbb. Put down that pen. . . . 

DooTOB. Let no man dare to raise his hand. . . . 

Cbisfin. Signor Captain, then lend us your 
sword. It also is the instrument of justice. 

Captain. [Going up to the table and delivering a 
tremendous blow with his sword upon the papers 
which the Doctor t^ writing.] Have the kindness to 
desist. . • • 

Doctor. You see how ready I am to comply with 
a reasonable request Suspend the actions. [They 
stop writing.] There is a previous question to be 
adjudged. . . . The parties dispute among them- 
selves. Nevertheless it will be proper to proceed 
with the inventory. . . . 

Pantaloon. No! No! 

Doctor. It is a formality which cannot be waived. 

Crispin. Idon't think it would be proper. When 
the proper time comes you can write as much as you 
like. But let me have permission first to speak for 
a moment with these honorable gentlemen. 

Doctor. If you wish to have what you are about 
to say recorded as testimony . . . 

Crispin. No ! By no means. Not a single word, 
or I shall not open my mouth. 

Captain. Better let the fellow talk. 

Crispin. What shall I say? What are you com- 
plaining about? That you have lost your money? 
What do you want? To get it back? 

Pantaloon. Exactly! Exactly! My money. 

Innkeeper. Our money ! 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 633 

Gbisfik. Then listen to me. . . . Where do yon 
suppose that it is going to come from when yon 
insist upon destroying the credit of my master in 
this fashion and so make his marriage with the 
daughter of Signer Polichinelle impossible t . . . 
Name of Mars I . . . I had rather deal with a thou- 
sand knaves than one fool. See what you have done 
now and how you will be obliged to compound with 
justice for a half share of what we owe you. I say 
owe you. . . . How will you be any better off if you 
succeed in sending us to the galleys or to some worse 
place? Will it put money in your pockets to collect 
the welts on our skins t Will you be richer or nobler, 
or more powerful because we are ruined? On the 
other hand, if you had not interrupted us at such an 
inopportune moment, to-day, this very day, yon 
would have received your money with interest . . . 
which God knows is enough to send you all to hang 
on the gallows to remain suspended forever, if jus- 
tice were not in these hands — and these pens. . . . 
Now do as yon see fit, for I have told yon what yon 
ought to • . • 

DooTOB. They will remain suspended. . . . [Tap- 
ping on the table and pointing to the protocols.] 

Captaik. I would never have believed it possible 
that their crimes could have been so great. 

PoMCHiNBLLB. That Crispiu. ... He will be ca- 
pable of convincing them. . . . 

Pantaloon. [To the Innkeeper.] What do yon 
think of this? . . . Looking at it calmly . . . 

Innkeepeb. What do you think? 

Pantaloon. You say that your master was to 
have married the daughter of Signer Polichinelle 
to-day t But suppose he refuses to give his consent? 

Crispin. What good would that do him? His 
daughter has run away with my master ... all the 



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634 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

world will soon know it. . . . It is more important 
to him than it is to anyone else not to have it known 
that his daughter has thrown herself away upon a 
rapscallion, a man without character, a fugitive 
from justice. 

Pantaloon. If this should turn out to be true 
. . . What do you thinkf 

Innkbepeb. Better not weaken. The rogae 
breathes deceit. He is a master. 

PantaiiOON. You are right. No one can tell how 
far to believe him. Justice I Justice ! 

Crispin. I warn you . . . you lose everything! 

Pantaloon. Wait . . . just a moment. . . . We 
will see. ... A word with you, Signer Polichinelle. 

PoucHiNEiiLE. What do you want with met 

Pantaloon. Suppose that we had made a mis- 
take in this complaint. Suppose that Signer Leander 
should turn out to be, after all, a noble, virtuous 
gentleman . . . incapable of the slightest dishonest 
thought . . . 

PoucHiNBLLB. What is that t Say that again. 

Pantaloon. Suppose that your daughter was in 
love with him madly, passionately, even to the 
point where she had run away with him from your 
house? . . . 

PoucHiNBLLB. My daughter run away from my 
house with that man? Who says sot Show me the 
villain. . . . Where is het 

Pantaloon. Don't get excited. It is only in 
supposition. 

PoucHiNELLE. Well, sir, I shall not tolerate it 
even in supposition. 

Pantaloon. Try to listen more calmly. Suppose 
all this should have happened. Wouldn't the best 
thing for you to do be to get them married t 

POUCHINBLLB. Married f I would see them dead 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 635 

first. But it is useless to consider it. I see what 
you want. . . . You are scheming to recoup your- 
selves at my expense, you are such rogues. But it 
shall not be. It shall not be. . . . 

PANTAiiOON. Take care. We had better not talk 
about rogues while you are present. 

Innksepeb. Hear I Hear ! 

PoucHiNEiiLE. Bogues, rogues . . . conspiring 
to impoverish me. But it shall not be ! It shall not 
be! 

Doctor. Have no fear, Signer Polichinelle. Even 
though they should be dissuaded and abandon their 
design, do you suppose that this process will amount 
to nothing? Do you imagine that one line of what is 
written in it can ever be blotted out, though two and 
fifty crimes be alleged therein and proved against 
them, besides as many more which require no 
proof? 

Pantaloon. What do you say now, Crispin? 

Obisfin. That though all those crimes were 
proved three times and those that require no proof 
yet three times more than the others, you would 
still be losing your money and wasting your time, 
for we cannot pay what we do not have. 

DooTOB. Not at all. That is not good law. For 
I have to be paid, whatever happens. 

Crispin. Then the complainants will have to pay 
you. We shall have more than we can do to pay our 
offenses with our backs. 

Doctor. The rights of justice are inviolable, and 
the first of them is to attach in its interest whatever 
there is in this house. 

Pantaloon. But what good will that do us? How 
shaU we ever get anything? 

Innksbpeb. Of course not. Don't you see? . . . 

DooTOB. Write> write, for if we were to talk for- 



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636 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

ever we could never arrive at a condusion whidi 
would be more satisfactory. 

Pantaloon and Innkeefeb. No! No I Not a 
word! Not a word I 

Cbispin. Hear me, first, Signer Doctor. In your 
ear . . . suppose you were to be paid at once, on the 
spot and without the trouble of sJl this writing • . • 
your . . . what is it that you call them? — scraps of 
justice? 

DooTOB. Perquisites of the law. 

Crispin. Have it your own way. What would you 
say to that? 

DocTOB. Why, in that case . . . 

Cbispin. Then listen: — ^my master will be ridi 
to-day, influential, if Signer Polichinelle consents 
to his marrying his daughter. Eemember that the 
young lady is the only child of Signer Polichinelle; 
remember that my master will be master indeed not 
only of her. . • . Eemember . . . 

DocTOB. H*m. . . . It certainly does deserve to 
be remembered. . . . 

Pantaloon. [To Cbispin.] What did he say? 

Innkebpbb. What are you going to do? 

DocjTOB. Let me consider. That fellow dearly is 
not thick-witted. It is easy to see that he is ac- 
quainted with legal precedent. For if we remember 
that the wrong which has been done was purely a 
I)ecuniary one, and that every wrong which can be 
redressed in kind suffers in the reparation the most 
fitting punishment ; if we reflect that in the barbaric 
and primitive law of vengeance it was written: an 
eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, but not a 
tooth for an eye nor an eye for a tooth. ... So in 
the present instance it might be argued a crown for 
a crown and money for money. He has not taken 
your lives. Why not? The fact is sufficient evi- 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 637 

denoe that he did not wish you to take his in return. 
He has not insulted your persons, impugned your 
honor, your reputations. Why not? Plainly because 
he was not willing to submit to a like indignity from 
you. Equity is the supremest justice. Equitas jus- 
ticiam magna est. And from the Pandects to Tri* 
bonian, including Emilianus Tribonianus . . . 

Paktaloon. laclude him. So long as we get our 
money • . . 

Innkbepeb. So long as he pays us . • . 

PoucHiKSLLB. What is this nonsense? How can 
he pay? What is the use of all this talk? 

Cbisfik. a great deal of use. As I was saying, 
you all seem to be deeply interested in saving my 
master, in saving both of us, for your own advan- 
tage, for the common good of all. You, so as not to 
lose your money; the Signor Doctor so as not to see 
all this vast store of doctrine go for nothing, which 
he is heaping up in that sarcophagus of learning; 
the Signor Captain because everybody knows that 
he was the friend of my master, and it would not be 
creditable to his valor to have it said that he had 
been the dupe of an adventurer; you, Signor Harle- 
quin, because your poetic dithyrambs would lose all 
tiieir merit as soon as it became known with what 
little sense you composed them; you, Signor Polichi- 
nelle, my dear old friend, because your daughter is 
now, in the sight of God and before man, Signor 
Leander's wife. 

PoiJOHiKBLiiE. You lie I You lie I Impudent ras- 
cal 1 Cut-throat! 

Crispin. I think then we had better proceed with 
the inventory of what there is in the house. Write, 
write, and let all these gentlemen be our witnesses. 
We can begin with this apartment. [He throws back 
the tapestry from the door at the rear, and Silvia, 



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638 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Lbandeb, Donka Sibbka, Columbine and the Wifs 
OF PoMCHiKBLLB appear, forming a group.l 

Pantaloon and the Innkeeper. Sylvia I 

Captain and Haelbqxtin. Together! Both of 
them I 

Pouohinelle. Is it possible? What? Are they 
all against me? My wife and daughter, too? AH, 
all, for my rain? Seize that man, these women, this 
impostor, or I with my own hand . . . 

Pantaloon. Signor Polichinelle, are yon ont of 
yonr head? 

Leander. {Advancing toward the proscenium, ac- 
companied hy the others.^ Yonr daughter came to 
my honse under the protection of Donna Sirena, 
believing that I was wounded; and I ran immedi- 
ately in search of your wife, so that she too might 
be present with her and protect her. Silvia knows 
who I am, she knows the whole story of my life of 
misery and wandering, of cheats and deceptions and 
lies . . . how it has been utterly vile; and I am sure 
that no vestige of our dream of love any longer 
remains in her heart. . . . Take her away from this 
place, take her away; that is my only request before 
I deliver myself up into the hands of justice. 

PoLicHiNBLLE. The ptmishmeut of my daughter 
shall be my aJBFair, but as for this villain. . . . Seize 
him, I say! 

Silvia. Father 1 If you do not save him it will be 
my death. I love him, I shall love him always; I 
love him now more than I ever did, because his heart 
is noble. He has been cruelly unfortunate; and he 
might have made me his by a lie, and he would not 
lie. 

Pouohinelle. Silence! Silence, foolish, unhappy 
girl ! This is the result of the bringing up by your 
mother ... of her vanity, her hallucinations, of all 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 639 

your romantic reading, your musio to the light of 
the moon. 

WiPB OF PouoHiNELLB. Anything would be pref- 
erable to having my daughter married to a man like 
you, to be unhappy afterwards all the rest of her 
life, like her mother. Of what use are my riches 
tomef 

SntBKA. You are right, Signora Polichinelle. Of 
what use are riches without lovef 

CoiiXTMBiNE. The same use as love without riches. 

Doctor. Signer Polichinelle, under the circum- 
stances, the oiUy thing for you to do is to get them 
married. 

Pantaloon. Or it will create a scandal in the 
city. 

Innkeepbb. And everybody will be on his side. 

Captain. And we can never consent to have you 
use force against your daughter. 

DooTOB. It will have to stand in the process that 
they were surprised here together. 

Cbisfin. And after all, the only trouble with my 
master was that he had no money; no one could 
outdo him in nobility of character; your grandchil- 
dren will be gentlemen . . . even if that quality 
does not extend up to the grandfather. 

All. Get them married I Get them married! 

Pantaloon. Or we will all turn upon you. 

Innkbbpeb. And your history will be brought to 
light . . . the secret story of your life. . . . 

HABLEQxnN. And you will gain nothing by thai 

SiKBN A. A lady begs it of you on her knees, moved 
to tears by the spectacle of a love so unusual in 
these days. 

CoLTTMBiNS. Which seems more like love in a 
story. 

All. Qet them married 1 Get them married I 



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640 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

PouoHivELLB. Yes; let them be married in an 
evil hour. My daughter shall be cat off without 
dowry and without inheritance. ... I will ruin my 
estate rather than that this reprobate . . . 

DocTOB. You certainly will not do anything of 
the kind, Signer Polichinelle. 

Pantaloon. Who ever heard of such nonsense t 

Innkbbpeb. I shouldn't think of it for a moment. 

Hablbqxjin. What would people sayt 

Captain. We could never consent to it. 

Silvia. No, my dear father, I am the one who 
cannot accept anything. I am the one who must 
share the poverty of his fate. I love him so. 

Lbandeb. That is the only condition upon which 
I can accept your love. 

[AU run toward Silvia and Leandbb.] 

DooTOB. What do you sayt Are you crazy? 

Pantaloon. Preposterous I Absurd ! 

Innkeepbb. You are going to accept everything. 

Hablbqttin. You will be happy and you will be 
rich. 

WiPB OP Polichinelle. What! My daughter in 
poverty! Is this wretch the hangman? 

SntBNA. Remember that love is a delicate babe 
and able to endure but few privations. 

DocTOB. It is clearly illegal Signer Polichinelle^ 
you will sign a munificent donation immediately as 
befits a person of your dignity and importance, who 
is a kind and loving father. Write, write. Signer 
Secretary, for this is something which nobody will 
object to. 

All. [Except Polichinelle.] Write! Write! 

DooTOB. And you, my dear, my innocent joxmg 
lovers . . . resign yourselves to riches. You have 



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TEE BONDS OF INTEREST 641 

no right to carry your prejudices to an extreme at 
which they become offensive to others* 

Pantaloon. [To Cbispin.] Now will you pay us T 

Cbispin. Who doubts it! But you will have to 
swear first that Signer Leander never owed you 
anything. . • . See how he is sacrificing himself upon 
your account, accepting this money which is repug- 
nant to him. • • . 

Pantaloon. We always knew that he was a per- 
fect gentleman. 

Innkebpeb. Always. 

Hablbquin. We aJl believed it. 

Captain. And we shall continue to maintain our 
belief. 

Cbispin. Now, Doctor, this process. ... Do you 
suppose there is waste space enough anywhere in 
the world for it to be thrown away uponf 

Doctob. My foresight has provided for every- 
thing. All that will be necessary is to change the 
punctuation. . . . For example, here where it says : 
** Whereas I depose and declare, not without due 
sanction of law'' • . . take out the comma and it 
reads: "Whereas I depose and declare not with- 
out due sanction of law.'' And here: "Wherefore 
he is not without due judgment condemned" . . • 
put in a comma and it reads: "Wherefore, he is 
not, without due judgment condemned" . . • 

Cbispin. Oh excellent comma I Oh wonderful, oh 
marvelous comma ! Stupendous Genius and Miracle 
of Justice I Oracle of the Law I Thou Monster of 
Jurisprudence! • • • 

Doctob. Now I can rely upon the generosity of 
your master. 

Cbispin. You can. Nobody knows better than 
you do how money will change a man. 



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642 THE BONDS OF INTEREST 

Secbbtabt. I was the one who put in and took 
ont the conunas. . . . 

Cbisfin. While you are waiting for something 
better, pray accept this chain. ... It is of gold. 

Sbgbbtaby. H'm! How many carats finef 

Crispin. Yon ought to know. Yon understand 
commas and carats. . . . 

PoucHiNELLB. I impose only one condition: — 
that this rogue leaves your service forever. 

GaisFDr. That will not be necessary, Signer 
Polichinelle. Do you suppose that I am so x>oor in 
ambition as my master? 

Lbandbb. What? You are not going to leave me, 
Crispin? It will not be without sorrow on my part 

Crispin. It will not last long. I can be of no 
further use to you. With me you will be able to lay 
aside your lion's skin and your old man's wisdom. 
. . . What did I tell you, sir? Between them all we 
were sure to be saved. . . . And believe me now, 
when you are getting on in the world, the lies of 
love are as nothing to the bonds of interest 

Leander. You are wrong. For without the love 
of Silvia I should never have been saved. 

Crispin. And is love a slight interest? I have 
always given due credit to the ideal and I count 
upon it always. With this the farce ends. 

Silvia. [To the audience.] You have seen in it 
how these puppets have been moved by plain and 
obvious strings, like men and women in tiiie farces of 
our lives — strings which were their interests, their 
passions, and all the illusions and petty miseries of 
their state. Some are pulled by the feet to lives of 
restless and weary wandering; some by the hands, 
to toil with pain, to struggle with bitterness, to strike 
with cunning, to slay with violence and rage. But 
into the hearts of all there descends sometimes from 



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THE BONDS OF INTEREST 643 

heaven an invisible thread, as if it were woven out 
of the sunlight and the moonbeams, the invisible 
thread of love, which makes these men and women, 
as it does these puppets which seem like men, almost 
divine, and brings to our foreheads the smile and 
splendors of the dawn, lends wings to our drooping 
spirits, and whispers to us still that this farce is not 
all a farce, that there is something noble, something 
divine in our lives which is true and which is eternal, 
and which shall not close when the farce of life 
shall dose. 

THE END OF THB OOMBDY 



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THE PORTMANTEAU THEATRE 

I F all the *' Little Theatres,'' the concrete 
expressions of dissatisfaction and pro- 
test against the ordinary play, none is 
more unique, more all-embracing in its 
aims, more sound in its psydbiology, 
than the Portmanteau Theatre, the 
creation of Mr. Stuart Walker. 
It is the reaction against the illusions which ap- 
peal to the eyes only. It makes use of no mechan- 
ical contrivances of setting, of no elaborate lighting 
eJBFects, of no extravagances of costuming, — ^that 
over-attention to detail on which the ultra-modem 
play has hung itself. 

From both sides Mr. Walker has attacked the 
problem, the stage and the acting. And so thor- 
oughly has each detail, of scenery, lighting, cos- 
tumes, actors, been considered and its needs met so 
adequately, that on no one can you put your finger 
and say, **The unique quality is due to this alone.'* 
No one is so emphasized as to be unpleasantly prom- 
inent. Rather, the ensemble is satisfying, so that 
you don't reason out why or how — ^the highest 
praise ! 

Behind the undecorated blue curtains, the stage 
of the Portmanteau shows only one wall of a room. 
The two side walls you think of as starting from 
this background and running right past the audi- 
ence, making one the entire space of stage and seats. 
And the fourth, if the room must be logically com- 
pleted, is not a barrier of footlights, but the rear 
wall of the auditorium itself. 

644 



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PORTMANTEAU THEATRE 645 

The whole represents, in a peculiar degree, the 
ftrohitectural union of stage and seats, offering a 
basis for that intimate union of audience and actors 
for which many producers of to-day are striving. 
This is heightened by the three levels of the stage — 
the first, one step above the audience, then the apron 
level, and the stage proper. The action of the play 
avails itself of one, or two, or all of these. The 
actors are equally at home on any level. Using those 
closer to the audience makes the listeners much more 
a part of the play. 

Occasionally, indeed, an actor sits with the spec- 
tators until his cue is given, and then walks up the 
aisle and on to the stage, talking as he goes. In one 
play of Mr. Walker's, the Boy does this, then 
chuckles, and says to the audience, '^Well, this 
can't be much of a play, if I can get into it I Now, 
canitt'' 

The color scheme of the stage is a delight, — ^gray 
floor covering, the wall a restful blue, the woodwork 
black with a trim of gold. Across the blue back- 
ground runs the narrow beautifully curved line of 
the milky way, with its gold and silver stars, broken 
in the center with the little semi-circular device of 
the theatre. A striking combination f No, but pleas- 
ing, restful, readily adapted to the special setting 
used with each play. 

These ** sets'' are not planned to be exceptionally 
unique. They are not Beinhardt, not Leon Bakst, 
not Granville Barker, not Belasco. They are the 
Portmanteau; and the whole aim is that the back- 
ground may serve, with the costumes and lighting, 
to establish the atmosphere, to give the spirit of 
the play. 

*' A lonely place," for example, the setting of The 
Trimplet, written by Mr. Walker, shows in the 



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646 PORTMANTEAU THEATRE 

painted scene a very lovely spot, cool with greens 
and bines and grays. No horizontals, bnt the long 
vertical lines of the tall trees, and their carve 
against the sky, really give a sense of isolation — not 
of shivery lonesomeness, bnt aloneness, a separation 
from the everyday world. The spirit of a dream 
play, partly then and partly nowadays, where the 
actors are looking for the secret of living happily 
forever, is thns suggested, not actually and tangibly 
given. 

One of the plays already produced, A Pan and 
Two Candlesticks, by Mary MacMillan, makes no 
use at all of stage and setting, but is given before 
the curtain. Such a play is rare, for it must be 
simple in form, with two or three characters. It 
requires a clever situation plus charm, of which the 
Austin Dobson type is an illustration. 

The costumes are abnost entirely hand work. 
They are marked by simplicity of line, and beauty 
of color and of texture. By a wide use of blue, 
black, and cloth of gold, they repeat the color scheme 
of the background. 

The lighting makes no attempt at illusion. It does 
not say, **This is real sunshine; so cleverly and skil- 
fully is it managed, the illusion is a complete suc- 
cess,^' but, ** We give you the feeling of sunshine, the 
feeling of gloom and mist.'* The realest realism is 
the imagination; and if the audience lacks this, and 
is not willing to play, even the most perfect illusion 
cannot succeed. 

The training of the actors is as fundamentally dif- 
ferent as is the theatre itself. They are not drilled 
in diction and enunciation. There is never a center 
of the stage whence all important lines must be 
spoken at the audience. Instead they are trained, 
first to get, and then to give, the spirit of the play. 



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PORTMANTEAU THEATRE 647 

There is a story to telL The actors love the story. 
As a result, they tell it well ; and the audience, happy, 
pleasantly stimulated, falls into the play. To secure 
this ensemble result, some sacrifice of the individual 
is at times necessary. 

At each performance there are four actors who 
bridge over the gulf between stage and audience. 
Memory, a pale figure, coming from among the spec- 
tators, leads the guests with him, inviting them to 
come behind the blue curtain, to play, not to look at 
the scene, but to live it. Then the Prologue, who 
explains the play, till everything is as clear as a 
summer morning coming over the sea. Next appears 
the Device-Bearer, who carries in all the setting. In 
one play, his eight trips made the Prologue (and 
some of the audience?) restless and impatient to 
begin. Another character, recurring in several of 
the plays, is the Person-Passing-By, his costume 
suggesting the oriental, absorbed in his search for 
the hidden things, sharing his comments on the play 
with the friendly audience. 

Every detail about the stage and all ** business*' 
in the acting, Mr. Walker subjects to this one ques- 
tion: Will it help to give the spirit of the playt 
And in giving this, the Portmanteau Theatre gives 
a still greater thing — ^the play spirit, that something 
compounded of youth and imagination, which to-day 
has gone out of people's lives,— out of their homes, 
out of their readuig, out of their everyday existence, 
most of all out of the ordinary theatre. 

The plays in the repertory of the Portmanteau 
present a great variety. But they have one charac- 
teristic in common, they all have this spirit of play. 
Short most of them are, given two or three in an 
evening. Gay little plays, filled with the joy and 
fineness of life, must be brief, and this is good psy- 



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648 PORTMANTEAU THEATRE 

chology which the author-producer so wdl under- 
stands. 

A peace play that never mentions war, bat treats 
this serious subject whimsically; N^erthdess, a bit 
of nonsense where all the actors are obsessed by this 
word; The Window Garden, the story of a cripple 
living in a tenement room ; a comedy. Six Who Pass 
While the Lentils Boil, wherein the blind man 
teaches the boy to see; a Pierrot play; The Road, 
personifying Dusk, Shadows, and the Wind; The 
Folding Play, just whimsies well fitting this theatre 
— ^these are some of the pleasures awaiting the spec- 
tators from seven to seventy, who come to play at 
the Portmanteau. 

Yet not every performance will be a group, for the 
plans include three mystery plays; Gammer Gur- 
ton's Needle, announced as **a coarse comedy** to 
forestall criticism; and Love's Labor's Lost, Shake- 
speare's first writing after he went up to London, 
full of delightful nonsense and wonderful poetry. 

Another plan, in decided contrast to these, is for 
an occasional performance of gloomy plays, for peo- 
ple who think they want them. They will be given 
in the afternoon, so that women may go, without 
unwilling escorts, and be depressed to their hearts' 
content. 

The significant thing about this theatre is, that 
having something different to offer in setting and 
acting, it does actually offer it, to discontented play- 
goers, no matter where they live. For the Port- 
manteau is appropriately named. Every part of it 
has been planned with the idea of carrying it from 
place to place. It fits compactly into cases weighing 
only fifteen hundred pounds. It is easily set up in 
two and a half hours, and readily taken down in an 
hour less. And its size permits its being used on 



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PORTMANTEAU THEATRE 649 

any stage, in a school aaditoriiim, in a gymnasinm, 
in a hall or ballroom, or out of doors. 

To local managers it offers not only plays, with 
the needed costomes and scenery — for even the regu- 
lation producer does that; but what is necessary to 
give the atmosphere, the stage itself, with the curtain 
and lighting. And all of this, for a repertoire of six- 
teen unique plays, requires no greater impedimenta 
than the ordinary company carries for one produc- 
tion. 

While it is planned to take the Portmanteau The- 
atre on the road, until now it has been used only at 
a settlement house in New York City. Mr. Walker's 
plans here are two-fold : for his sixteen professionals 
to give plays which shall serve as a model to the set- 
tlement; and for the boys and girls of the commu- 
nity to use his theatre for the exhibition of their 
work. 

Designing and building the scene, weaving the 
cloth and making the costumes, selling tickets, man- 
aging the lights and the stage, as well as the acting, 
must be done by the community. Not to encourage 
dramatic clubs, that their members may give per- 
formances to paying spectators, but to prove that 
the individual-best added together makes the com- 
munity-best, and to show this community expression 
to the very best advantage, to invited friends, the 
theatre serving as a beautiful show-window, is the 
ultimate aim. 

The theatre is not endowed. It is not the play- 
thing of a millionaire. It is not the experiment of a 
group who share its financial support. With all its 
possibilities, and the ideals and dreams of its cre- 
ator, it must pay its way. It must provide an income 
for producer and actors, and unite the joy of the 
work with the joy of working for a living. 



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650 PORTMANTEAU THEATRE 

Five hundred dollars must be charged for a single 
evening. A week in one place, eight performances, 
can be given for twenty-five hundred. And no larger 
a sum than seventy-five thousand would insure invi- 
tation performances for a whole year. 

The theatre is not a philanthropy, to uplift the 
settlement neighborhood. It is to give to them, and 
to other neighborhoods, what they are hungry for — 
the spirit of play. 

**I haven't been to the theatre,*' said a guest at a 
recent performance; **IVe been curled up in a big 
chair, all one rainy afternoon, with a new volume of 
Grimm's fairy tales!" 

Gb^ob Humphbiy. 



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THE EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOE 
n. The Rise of the Modsbk Aotob 

BY ABTHTJB POLLOOK 

was some six centuries after all sem- 
blance of dramatic art had disappeared 
with the passing of the Roman tiieatreSi 
that a new drama began to burgeon in 
the Middle Ages. And at its beginning 
began again the art of acting. The men 
whose task it was to devise the earliest 
dramatic representations, and those who were called 
upon to present them, had no choice but to grope 
blindly about in the darkness of ignorance, with the 
knowledge of no drama of the past to make their 
labors lighter, to lead or to mislead them. The 
growth of the renascent drama was consequently 
dow. The growth of the art of those who acted it 
was no more rapid, for their progress could but keep 
pace with the evolution of the drama. But by the 
end of the sixteenth century, from a tangle of in- 
choate tendencies many threads had woven them- 
selves into a new dramatic fabric, and acting had 
once more acquired the dignity of an art and the 
position of a recognized, remunerative and, despite 
the frequent defamatory outbreaks of its enemies, 
a fairly reputable profession. 

The forces which combined to bring about this 
consummation, though not in all respects the same 
in Germany and Spain, England, France and Italy, 
were in those countries very similar. Throughout 
Europe a drama bom in the church and a drama of 

651 



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652 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

seoolar origin gave the budding actor material in 
which to work. It was by the merging of the ele- 
ments of these two types of play that a definite dra- 
matic form was fixed upon. And it was from among 
the men who, in their f eeble, artless, half-inartica- 
late fashion took part in the religions and the lay 
drama that there were evolved those who established 
the profession, the advantages of which actors were 
able to enjoy by th^ dawn of the seventeenth century. 

If there exists any evidence of a connecting link 
between modem acting and the histrionic art of the 
ancients, it is to be found in the methods of the 
strolling vagabond-performers, who were the earli- 
est professional entertainers. When the Roman 
theatres were closed to him, the actor found his 
occupation gone. He had either to seek other means 
of livelihood or, pocketing the little pride vouch- 
safed men of his profession in the latter days of 
Bome, to mingle with the jugglers and the tumblers 
and the clowns, adopt their nomadic mode of life 
and make a living by their methods. The latter 
course, no doubt, the Roman mimus found the more 
practicable and attractive. It is likely that in time 
his talents, added to those of the Teuton scop, pro- 
duced the type of entertainer known in the Middle 
Ages as the minstrel. 

For a time the minstrel class was most creditably 
represented by the poet-musicians about whom so 
many threads of romance cling, the troubadours 
who reached the height of their achievement during 
the eleventh century and were popular and impor- 
tant figures in the life of the towns for the next 
two hundred years. But these bards were not en- 
tirely typical of the strolling class. The majority 
of their companions of the road had in them more 
of the mountebank than of the bard. They were a 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 653 

varied and versatile lot, some of ihem acrobats, 
others singers, tricksters, instrmnentalists, jesters, 
qnacks — all snappers-up of unconsidered trifles, who 
wandered from place to place, keeping money in 
their pnrses and a roof over their heads on winter 
nights by making themselves objects of amusement 
to all who were willing to pay to be amused. A few 
performed singly, others, like our vaudeville teams 
and troupes, travelled together and together offered 
their **acf — a bit of humorous dialogue or merely 
feats of strength and agility or exhibitions of sleight- 
of-hand. Sometimes they had a simple little reper- 
toire of crude and formless farces of the slapstick 
kind which, in their development, were destined to 
be influenced by the more ambitious forms of drama 
growing up about them; forms which they in their 
turn must have had some effect upon. 

Protective guilds were formed by the minstrels, 
as they had been formed by the Greek actor before 
them. And to some of the cleverest and more fortu- 
nate among the minstrels a fixed yearly salary — 
counted though it was in shillings rather than in 
pounds — ^was paid by the king who kept them as 
retainers, or by the corporation of the town that em- 
ployed them and the livery of which they often wore. 
They were smUed upon and protected by an indul- 
gent court, glowered at and damned by a hostile 
clergy, and by an eager populace no less beloved 
than is the moving picture actor of the present 
century. 

These minstrels, though not actors, properly 
speaking, were always professionals. The first pro^ 
f essional actors were either minstrels turned actor 
or amateur actors turned professional. The devel- 
opment of the amateurs began with the advent of 
the religious drama. 



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654 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

Arising as it did in the church, somewhere about 
the tenth century, the religious drama had for its 
first actors members of the clergy. They played 
their parts as devout men employing their persons 
to make the teachings of the Bible more intelligible 
and impressive to inattentive and untutored wor- 
shippers, by appealing to the eye. At first it was 
witii a few bits of dumb show that they did this. 
But as their primitive pantomimic action grew more 
elaborate, dialogue was evolved to accompany it, and 
the two combined to make drama of the Bible stories. 
Thus began the religious drama that was known as 
the Mysteries in France, as the Geistliche Schaus- 
piel in Germany, the Auto Sacramental in Spain, 
the Sacra Rappresentazione in Italy, and as the 
Miracles in England, where it reached its climax 
in the great town cycles of the thirteenth and early 
fourteenth centuries. 

When this drama had outgrown the church and 
the clergy, townsmen were called upon to produce 
it and to be impersonators. The responsibility of 
the production of the English liturgical plays was 
put upon the guilds of artisans, each guild staging 
one of the simple dramas of the cycle and supplying 
from among its members actors to impersonate the 
biblical characters. In France, where, it is said, very 
often two hundred, and sometimes as many as five 
hundred, people took part in the earlier presenta- 
tions, all classes of the community were included, 
nobles acting parts as well as workmen, and occa- 
sionally even women being allowed to have a hand 
in the work. 

The acting of these untrained citizens, **craftes 
men and meane men,'' as the English artisans de- 
scribed themselves, was a simple, homely, artless 
endeavor, much like childish make-believe, and not- 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 655 

able more for enthusiasm, vigor and innate liking 
for rant than for discernment or skill. Though some 
of them were spoken of by their contemporaries as 
^'connyngy discrete and able players/' the level of 
their ability in England is probably not inadequately 
nor unjustly represented by the work of Bottom and 
his band in A Midsummer Night's Dream. In 
France, if we may judge from extant stage direc- 
tions, there was, perhaps, a demand for greater com- 
petency on the part of the chief performers, whose 
roles sometimes presented at least the di£Sculty of 
great length, and occasionally called for no little 
physical endurance. Among these amateurs, how- 
ever, it is quite possible that there may have been 
men as capable as the modem amateurs at Ober- 
anmiergau. 

But, generally speaking, they were called upon to 
do little more in the way of acting than had been 
done by the leader of the Greek chorus. The work- 
men actors merely recited simple bits of narrative 
in the form of dialogue and, for the rest, walked or 
romped through their parts. Their actions were 
described in words rather than made eloquent by 
'^si>eaking gestures'' or carefully thought-out busi- 
ness. Except in a few isolated instances, little at- 
tempt was made at consistent characterization, little 
differentiation of types or individuals was demanded 
of the actor by the author. Herod ranted, Noah's 
wife scolded, the devil roared; and in this way they 
distinguished themselves from the rest. Otherwise 
the different personages in a play were made recog- 
nizable more by some striking feature of their dress 
or make-up than by distinctive habits of speech, 
traits of character or qualities of mind. It is, per- 
haps, significant in this connection, that the few 
pence with which the actors were rewarded for their 



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656 EVOLUTION OP THE ACTOR 

efforts were in amount proportionate not so mndi to 
the length and difficulty of the part as to its religious 
significance. God^ for example, was usually the 
highest priced player, whereas tiie souls he saved, 
regardless of the problems they presented to the 
player, did not demand so high a payment But if 
at any time an actor knew his part imperfectly, he 
was &ied without consideration for the character of 
the role allotted him. 

But despite their simple crudeness and admitted 
lack of **lyttural scyens,'' these performers of the 
miracles were actors in intent at least; and with 
them acting tradition, if it were only the traditional 
ranting of Herod, began. 

While the drama emanating from the church was 
being developed to its fullest and undergoing 
changes to suit the proclivities of its actors and the 
predilections of its audiences, from school and uni- 
versity and from the village green, as well as from 
church and monastery, came other types of secular 
drama more or less indebted to the liturgical plays. 
As the religious drama gradually spent itself after 
the fourteenth century, these newer types gained 
strength enough to carry on the work of shaping the 
mould in which such early masters as Marlowe, Kyd 
and Shakespeare were soon to cast their works. 

The actor they also shaped. The moral plays 
required of him a little more action and a little less 
talk, and with their personified abstractions they 
must have set him to work thinking out and putting 
into practice methods of revealing the various traits 
of character and peculiarities of appearance that 
distinguished different types of men. The drama, 
originating in the folk-festivals, gave him free rein 
to use his ingenuity in creating comic effects and 
humorous characterizations. Meanwhile in the halls 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 657 

of school and college yonthf nl novices were being 
carefully educated, and painstakingly coached in the 
art of impersonation. 

But as early as the fifteenth century acting as an 
art could hardly have reached any great degree of 
advancement. Yet it began about that time to be 
taken up as a profession as there gradually arose a 
class of men who were content to live by what they 
could earn by acting alone. No doubt the fact that 
the strolling minstrels were able to make a living 
with their buffooneries and their repertoire of prim- 
itive f arcesy emboldened the cleverest and most ad- 
venturous of the amateurs to join forces with them 
and try their luck upon the road with bits of drama 
chipped from the block of the miracles or the morals. 
It is equally probable that many of the minstrels 
were at the same time learning from the amateurs 
that it was possible to entertain by depending less 
than had been their custom upon mere acrobatics 
and more upon histrionic ability. 

At any rate, with the appearance of the interlude 
there sprang up the first English professional act- 
ors. Indeed, the interlude seems to have been at 
first hardly more than a professional adaptation of 
the moral play; the mor^dity, that is, arranged for 
performance by a few persons on the road and 
suited for popular consumption by being stripped 
of much of its didacticism and seasoned with humor. 
In the latter part of the fifteenth century innumer- 
able companies of these professionals, consisting in 
most cases of three or four men, with a boy to do the 
women's parts, had equipped themselves with a coP*' 
lection of some four or so of their demoralized and 
diverting moralities and were to be found travelling 
**upon the hard hoofe from village to village for 
cheese and buttermilke,'' acting their interludes in 



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658 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

the banquet halls of nobles for whatever the nobles 
would give them, or in the streets and at the inns for 
as mudi as they could entice from the pockets of 
the appreciative populace. Before the end of the 
century many of the nobles, well pleased with these 
entertaining fellows, had taken the cleverest of them 
under their protection. Henry VII himself, in 1494, 
had attached to his court four players whom he 
accorded a regular salary. 

The following century found them playing a great 
part in the life of the people. The amateurs, how- 
ever, had not yet had their last fling at acting. 
Artisan-actors the professionals easily outshone. 
But with the Children of the Chapel Boyal and St. 
Paul's, with the school and college students who had 
long been acting saints' plays, moralities and inter- 
ludes written for them by their erudite masters, the 
men who gave the English drama its first comedy 
and farce, and with the maturer amateurs of the 
Inns of Court, to whom England owes her first trag- 
edy, the professional players had still to carry on 
a struggle for supremacy that lasted throughout the 
greater part of the sixteenth century. 

But so indispensable had they made themselves 
that, on the occasion of their being expelled from 
London as a result of the enmity of the Puritans, 
the continued demand for amusement led them to 
erect outside the city, in 1576, the first of England's 
theatres. The Theatre, as it was called, built by 
James Burbage, actor, joiner and man of brains, 
was soon followed by another playhouse, The Cur- 
tain, also erected by duccessful professionals. And 
in 1577 Harrison made their prosperity a reproach 
by saying it was **an euident token of a wicked time 
when plaiers were so riche that they can build suche 
houses." If the theatres were not an indication of 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 659 

80 wicked a time as Harrison supposed, they were 
at least an evident token of the establishment in 
England of acting as an attractive and profitable 
profession. 

A profitable profession acting had nndoubtedly 
now become. As an art it was also developing. In 
its evolution, the interlude, gradually discarding the 
abstractions of the moral play and fiUing their places 
with contemporary characters of greater individual- 
ity, required its actors to impersonate such men and 
women as they mingled with each day upon the 
streets; a fact which must have made them strive to 
increase the naturalness of their representations. 
The school plays, though they seem to have offered 
no difficulties that could not be met by the boister- 
ous good spirits of the youths who acted them, also 
contained some very definite and complete charac- 
izations, the author's admitted aim being **to frame 
each that by his common talk you may his nature 
know. ' ' Thus the actor's talents for character inter- 
pretation were being exercised and consequently 
increased. 

Marlowe has hinted that the plays these petted 
and well-fed players were performing when acting 
became a firmly established profession, were com- 
posed largely of the ** jigging veins of rhyming 
mother wits.'' Their acting, too, still smacked of 
* * such conceits as downage keeps in pay. ' ' But they 
were now trained in most of the essentials of their 
art and wanted only the opportunity to work in bet- 
ter dramatic material to become more nearly perfect 
histrions. When that material was at hand, they 
suddenly ceased to be clever nondescripts and blos- 
somed into artists of great accomplishment. 

Elsewhere than in England the evolution of the 
actor was proceeding also. Though the drama de- 



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660 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

veloped differently in the various countries of Eu- 
rope after the fourteenth century, by the sixteenth, 
histrionic talent had everywhere ripened to the point 
that leads to professionalism. In 1554 Lope de 
Bueda, actor-manager-playmaker, appeared in Spam, 
with his troupe of professionals, ti Oermany the 
work of the amateurs culminated with Hans Sachs^ 
the shoemaker-mastersinger, who had evolved for 
himself and his skilful company of artisans a very 
creditable technique. Sachs died in 1576 and the 
professionals were not long in succeeding him. It 
was in the latter part of the same century that a 
class of paid performers also sprang up in Prance. 
While the miracles were losing their vigor in the 
hands of the Passion Brothers, upon whom had de- 
volved the privilege of producing them at the Hotel 
de Bourgogne, energetic young amateurs had formed 
merry fool companies such as the Enfants sans souci 
and la Bazoche, which, with their performances of 
gay farces, were attracting and meriting much atten- 
tion. These companies developed many famous 
players of farce. From among their number and 
from the ranks of the mountebanks of the road must 
have come the professionals that in the latter half 
of the century were roving in companies through the 
towns, waiting for an opportunity to enter Paris. 
And before the close of the century the Passion 
Brothers, unable themselves to compete successfully 
with the adept Italians who had come to France and 
were drawing crowds to the Petit Bourbon, were 
willing to rent the Hotel de Bourgogne to one of 
these eager strolling troupes. Thus the French pro- 
fessional was afforded a foothold in his own country. 
It was the sixteenth century, too, that saw the 
maturing and the spread of the Italian Improvised 
Comedy, or the Commedia deW arte, as it was also 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 661 

called, Italy's greatest contribntion to the acting art 
and the inspiration of much in the modem drama. 

When and where and how the Commedia deU' arte 
originated, and by whom it was first performed, it 
is impossible to say with any degree of finality. 
There are those who, without getting their theories 
generally accepted, claim for it a direct descent from 
the Atellan comedy of the Bomans. But that masked 
actors were presenting improvised comedies in the 
first quarter of the sixteenth century is a fact well 
known. By the second part of the century these 
actors were presenting improvised comedies in many 
countries; and for the better part of the next two 
hundred years the Commedia deW arte flourished 
without a serious rival in Italy. 

The actor of the Improvised Comedy, unlike the 
average performer in the religious drama, was not 
content to do no more than stalk about, stolid of 
mien and stiff of form, and mouth monotonously a 
stream of words set down for him by others. The 
Italian author, who was in most cases the leader of 
the troupe, simply supplied the actor with a scenario 
of the play, for perusal beforehand ; a stage-manager 
made a few suggestions; and the rest was left to 
each individual member of the company. The sce- 
nario sketched the story of the play and gave him a 
brief outline of the scenes in which he was expected 
to appear. When the proper moment came he en- 
tered in his best manner, improvised diverting dia- 
logue to fit the situations in which he found himself, 
and accompanied his speeches with sprightly busi- 
ness of his own devising. Since the same sort of 
situations were constantly recurring in the come- 
dies, and since the Commedia deU^ arte was a drama 
of types almost entirely, each actor usually making 
a specialty of one type, he was able to work up a 



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662 EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 

stock of effective bits of basiness and striking 
speeches which he could draw upon for play after 
play. Action became a very important part of his 
peiformance; stage business he developed to a high 
degree of perfection. And many were the tricks he 
taught the clumsy amateurs with whom he came into 
contact in the course of his rovings. 

Improvisation demanded of him a ready tongue, 
a quick wit, and great poise and self-controL For 
an actor to achieve success in the Improvised Com- 
edy, **face, memory, voice, and sentiment, '* so says 
Luigi Biccoboni, himself an actor, ^^are not enough. 
If he would distinguish himself, he must i)ossess a 
lively and fertile imagination, a great facility in 
expression; he must master the subtleties of the 
language, too, and have at his disposal a full knowl- 
edge of all that is required for the different situa- 
tions in which his role places him. " And if we may 
judge from the fame achieved by many of the actors 
of IJie day and the honors and rewards bestowed 
upon them, all these qualities were not scarce in 
Italy. 

It was the actors of the Commedia delV arte who, 
instead of following the prevalent custom of having 
all women's parts performed by boys or men, used 
women to fill the female roles, and thereby intro- 
duced the professional actress in the theatre. But 
to them the theatre owes infinitely more than that. 
The art of the actors and the dramatists of Spain 
and France, Germany, England and Austria, 
throughout which countries troupes of Italian actors 
traveled, was influenced and fertilized by their 
highly developed technique. Esi>ecially was this true 
in France, where the permanently established com- 
panies proved a source of great inspiration to the 
native actors who, at the beginning of the seven- 



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EVOLUTION OF THE ACTOR 663 

teenth century, were still comparatively crude. Even 
Moliere, it is said, found much to learn about acting 
from a study of their methods, and his plays indi- 
cate that the Italians too taught him a great deal 
about playmaMng also. Elsewhere their influence, 
though evident, was not so great; for England, Ger- 
many and Austria were not favored with so frequent 
visits by the Italian touring companies. However, 
they helped to add a needed polish to the actors 
of all the countries that they covered in their 
wanderings. 

It was only i)olish that was needed. For every- 
where the actor had now acquired sufficient skill to 
earn a good living, and to enable him presently to 
rise to a position of no little importance. 

Abthub Pollock. 



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THE STAGE 

1 N fhe Natyashastra of Bharata, a work on 
4 the dramay there is a description of the 
^ stage, but no mention of scenes. It does * 
6 not seem to me that this absence of con- 
P Crete scenery can have been much of a 
J loss. 

In spite of Wagner and his idea of the 
combined arts, it may be argaed that any one of the 
arts is only to be seen in her full glory when she is 
sole mistress ; it hurts her dignity and degrades her 
if she is called upon to share her household with a 
rival, — ^the more so, if that rival happen to be the 
favorite of the moment. If we have to sing an epic, 
the tune needs to become a chant, and to give up all 
hopes of rising to melodic heights. The true poem, 
on the one hand, furnishes its own music from within 
itself and rejects with disdain all outside help. On 
the other hand, the true song tells its own story in 
its own way, and waits for no Kalidas or Milton, — 
often doing quite well, as far as words are concerned, 
with a Hey-non-nonny or a tra-la-la. A sort of ar- 
tistic pageant may, no doubt, be got up with a mix- 
ture of word and tune and picture; but that would 
be common or market art, not of the royal variety. 
It may seem that dramatic art must needs be less 
independent than other forms; that the drama is 
created with the direct object in view of attaining 
its fulfillment by means of outside help, and there- 
fore awaits the acting, scenery, music and other 
accessories of the stage. 
I cannot agree with this opinion. Like the trad 

664 



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THE STAGE 665 

wif ciy who wants none other than her husband, the 
tme poem, dramatic or otherwise, wants none other 
than the understanding mind. We all act to our- 
selves as we read a play; and the play which cannot 
be su£Sciently interpreted by such invisible acting, 
has never yet gained the laurel for its author. 

So far as acting goes, it would be more correct to 
say that it has forlornly to await the coming of the 
dltuna; since only in its company can it display its 
charms. But the drama, which cramps and curtails 
itself to fit in with the actor's skill, becomes, like the 
hen-pecked husband, an object of scorn. The atti- 
tude of the drama should be: ^^If I can be acted, 
well and good; if not, so much the worse for the 
acting. '* 

But because the art of acting is necessarily de- 
X>endent on the drama, it need not therefore be the 
slave of every other art as well. If the art of acting 
would keep up its true dignity, let it not accept any 
bonds other than those which are absolutely requisite 
for its own self-expression. 

It is superfluous to state, for instance, that the 
actor is dependent on the words of the drama; he 
must smile or weep, and make his audience smile or 
weep, with the words of joy or scorn which the 
author puts into his mouth. But why pictures, — 
pictures which hang about the actor, and are not, 
even in part, his own creation? 

To my mind it shows only f aint-heartedness on the 
actor's part to seek their help. The relief from 
responsibility which he gains by their illusion is one 
which is begged of the painter. Besides, it pays the 
spectators the very poor compliment of ascribing to 
them an utter jwverty of imagination. 

Why, then, should the actor regard himself as in 
the witness-box of a court-of-law where his every 



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666 THE STAGE 

word must be supported by an oathf Why all this 
illusory paraphernalia to bewilder the poor trusting 
audience, which has come to the play with the delib- 
erate intention of believing and being happy ? These 
good people have surely not left their imaginations 
at home under lock and key. They have come to 
cooperate^ not to quarrel, with the interpretation of 
the drama. 

King Dushyanta hidden behind the trunk of a tree 
is listening to the talk of the Sakuntala and her com- 
panions. We, for our part, feel our creative faculty 
quite equal to the task of imagining the tree trunk, 
even though its image be not bodily present. The 
complex of the emotions appropriate to the different 
characters is doubtless difficult to conjure up and 
retain in its exactitude, and we are grateful for 
corresponding emotions in ourselves; but where is 
the difficulty in imagining a few trees, a cottage, or 
a bit of a river? To attempt to assist us, even in 
regard to these, with paintings of canvas hangings, 
is only to betray a woeful mistrust in our capacity. 

That is why I like the popular village plays in 
India. There is not so much of a gulf separating the 
stage from the audience. The business of interpre- 
tation and enjoyment is carried out by both in hearty 
cooperation, and the spirit of the play, which is the 
real thing, is showered from spectator to player, and 
from player to spectator, in a very camivfd of de- 
light. "VS^en the flower-girl is gathering her flowers 
on the empty stage, how would the importation of 
artificial plants help the situation? Must not the 
flowers blossom at her every motion? If not, why 
need an artist play the flower-girl at all? Why not 
have stocks and stones for spectators? 

If the poet who created Sakuntala had been 
obliged at every turn to think of bringing concrete 



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THE STAGE 667 

scenes on fhe stage, then at the very outset he would 
have had to stop the chariot from pursuing the fly- 
ing deer. I do not mean to suggest that the pen of 
the master-poet would have had to stop along with 
the ch^ot ; but what I want to ask is, Why should 
the great be required to curb itself for the sake of 
the petty? The stage that is in the poet's mind has 
no lack of space or appurtenance. There, scene fol- 
lows scene at the touch of his magic wand. The 
play is written for such a stage and for such scenes. 
The artificial platform with its hanging canvas is 
not worthy of the poet. 

So, while Dushyanta and his charioteer, standing 
in their respective places, are representing the very 
spirit of a moving chariot by word and act, is it too 
much to expect the audience to realize the elementary 
truth that, though the stage has its limits, the poem 
has not? No! For so easily do they forgive the 
poor material stage its shortcomings, that they lend 
to it the glory of the stage of their hearts. But how 
hard would it have been to forgive the wretched 
wooden platform, if it had compelled the i)oem to 
narrow itself down to its own limitations ! 

It is, I repeat, because the drama of Sakuntala had 
not to depend on artificial scenes, that the poet found 
it possible to create his own scenes. The hermitage, 
the cloud-path on the way to heaven, the woodland 
retreat, — ^in these scenes of nature, as in the por- 
trayal of the various characters, the poet was free 
to draw gold from his own creative treasure-house. 

The danger of the West, in modem times, appears 
to me to consist in the spectator wishing his truth 
to be too concrete. He would have imaginative 
treats; but he must be deluded by these imaginings 
being made exact imitations of actual things. He is 
too afraid of being cheated; and before accepting 



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668 THE STAGE 

with some amotint of enjoyment any representation 
of imaginative tmth, he must have a sworn testi- 
mony of its reality. He will not trast the flower, 
nntil he has seen the earth of the mountain top in 
which it has its roots. The modem age is, with 
him, the Age of Science; and mere faith will no 
longer remove mountains. That requires engineer- 
ing skill, — ^it is also costly. The expense which is 
incurred on the European stage for mere accessories 
would swamp the whole of the actor's art in poverty- 
stricken India. 

In the East, pomp and ceremony, play and rejoic- 
ing, are all easy and simple. It is because we serve 
our feasts on plaintain leaves that it becomes pos- 
sible to attain the real object of a feast — ^to invite 
the whole world into our little home. This true end 
could never have been gained, had the means been 
too complex and extravagant. 

The theatres which we have set up in India to-day, 
in imitation of the West, are too elaborate to be 
brought to the door of all. In them the creative 
richness of the poet and the player is overshadowed 
by the mechanical wealth of the capitalist. If the 
Hindu spectator has not been too far infected with 
the greed for realism; if the Hindu artist has any 
respect left for his own craft and skill; the best 
thing they can do for themselves is to regain their 
freedom by making a clean sweep of the costly rub- 
bish that has accumulated and is now clogging the 
stage. Babindbakath Tagobb. 

* In the letter wbieh accompanied tliis article ICr. Tagore wrote: 
* * I send yon a copy of a translation from a Bengali paper of mine. It 
is about the stag^it maj interest you. The original was written 
about fifteen years ago and mj opinion has not aUerad. ' ' 

Alice OoBBnc Hbnixibsok. 



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THE CASE OP AMERICAN DRAMA 

The Case of American Drama. By Thomas H. 
Dickinson. Honghton Mif9in Company. 1915. 

THOROUGHLY sonnd, but singularly 
uninteresting, volume is Professor 
Thomas H. Dickinson's The Case of 
American Drama. Foregoing radical 
and extremist views of every sort, the 
author steers a safe and sane middle 
course through all his theorizing. Neces- 
sarily he repeats much that is commonplace, and he 
is never startling; but the things he reiterates are 
for the most part worth while and authoritatively 
uttered. 

The reason for the book's dullness lies chiefly in 
its almost complete lack of the concrete. Rarely 
does one run across a work in which so little has 
been done to win the reader's attention. Through- 
out its 223 pages, for example, no American author 
or play is mentioned; in fact, I believe, the name of 
no living English-speaking dramatist occurs, with 
the single exception of Pinero. Generality prevails, 
from cover to cover. Furthermore, the categorical 
style of composition adds to the impression of the 
college lecturer absorbed in his abstractions. 

More than a quarter of the volume is given over 
to a discussion of **The Theatre in the Open" and 
** Festivals and Pageantry," which has little enough 
to do with the case of American drama. The title 
of the book, indeed, is virtually a misnomer, since 
the author's concern is primarily with the modem 

669 



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670 AMERICAN DRAMA 

drama in general, and only secondarily with that of 
the United States. The first chapter snms np the 
all too slight achievements of the New Theatre and 
compares them with those of national dramatic in- 
stitutions abroad. Chapter IE, which is by far the 
best, deals with '*The Social Sanction of Dramatic 
Art'' and has but little pecoliarly American appli- 
cation. In the third chapter we find a valuable dis- 
cussion of ''The Present Situation of the Stage in 
America''; and Chapter VI — ^the last — ^is the inev- 
itable, and as usual futile, forecast of the great 
things to come. 

The chief value of Professor Dickinson's book 
lies in the stress it places upon matters which, if 
obvious, are yet too often ignored, and in the defense 
he sets up for other factors in the drama which have 
been much misunderstood and frequently distorted. 
The essential social principle of the drama and the 
peculiar democratic quality of this art, by virtue of 
which the audience becomes as essential to consum- 
mation as is the playwright, the actor, or the pro- 
ducer — are the author's fundamental tenets. These 
favorite ideas of Sarcey have been much repeated 
by his many followers in this country, but they well 
deserve the scholarly elaboration Professor Dick- 
inson here accords them. 

''Drama shall not only be natural," he writes, 
"but it shall itself be socially constructive. We 
have a right to demand of our drama that it shall 
conduce to upbuilding and social health. It is laid 
upon drama by the conditions of its substance that 
it shall promote that social solidarity of which it is 
itself the outgrowth and the completest expression 
in art. A play which by conception or influence is 
anti-social is an anomaly and a perversity." 

This is obviously sound doctrine, as is also the 



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AMERICAN DRAMA 671 

author's defence of dramatic technique, that object 
of so many recent violent onslaughts. **Techiiique 
is not mere journeyman craftsmanship. It is the 
expert manipulation of all the expedients of the art 
to the end of the completest expression of truth 
through a substantial medium. So far from being 
tricky and oversubtle, the first and greatest require- 
ment of techniqr^e is directness and sincerity. '^ 

Similarly one's admiration is aroused by Pro- 
fessor Dickinson's sane attitnde toward snch vari- 
ous subjects as the importance of the repertory 
theatre, the need of standards in judging the drama, 
the true function of constructive criticism^ the sad 
results of modem naturalistic acting and of the lack 
of a conservatory for the training of young players, 
the real relation of the drama to literature, the limi- 
tations as well as the potentialities of the amateur 
as against the professional actor, and the experi- 
mental theatre of to-day, which has produce^d so 
much hubbub and so few vital results. 

As everyone knows, nearly all these topics have 
lately been centers of much extravagant and some- 
times harmful debate. However, the wise conserva- 
tism of Professor Dickinson is manifest in his 
handling of them all. 

Better acting will not come xmder the present sys- 
tem of traveling companies. The repertory theatre 
provides an excellent training-school for actors. As 
for our modem standards, tiiough the rules of the 
old order do not satisfy us, the new regime has not 
yet supplied its rules. A widely diffused construct- 
ive criticism is even more necessary in the case of 
drama than of other arts, since draima depends on 
the suffrage of the many for its existence. The 
modem decline of acting is admitted in the growing 
use of "actor-proof" plays. Amenability to pro- 



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672 AMERICAN DRAMA 

dnction makes a play a play. To the professional 
player we are obliged for the existence of the theatre 
to-day with such glories as still attach to it. 

The foregoing are statements called at random 
from Professor Dickinson's book. They will per- 
haps serve to iUnstrate the nature of the doctrine 
therein presented, trustworthy doctrine in ahnost 
every instance, and expressed always with admirar 
ble moderation. It is manifest that they are matters 
not i>eculiar to the theatre of any one nation. 

Very briefly — ^though I believe tiie author does not 
mention them — ^the plain facts in the case of Amer- 
ican drama — stripped of academic theorizing and 
verbiage — are principally these: American drama 
is nearly all produced in New York City or under 
New York influence. The New York audience, which 
sets the pace, is — ^generally speaking — ^an audience 
of inferior culture and taste. Mr. Augustus Thomas 
is reported as having said last year that it is an 
audience (I think) with a 300-word vocabulary. The 
statement is entirely credible to any observer of the 
people who gather before our metropolitan foot- 
lights. And it is most unlikely that managers or 
playwrights will ever get far in advance of those 
they live to please. The theatre is even more de- 
pendent on the spectators, perhaps, than Professor 
Dickinson insists. New York audiences on the whole 
prefer farce and melodrama of the conventional 
school. Purely superficial verisimilitude is enou^ 
for them; it is as far as they can go. The inner 
verities are of secondary importance. The intel- 
lectual drama and ''the drama of sight and 'style' " 
— ^if they have value, will not soon make a widespread 
American appeal, while present conditions obtain. 
Either the New York — ^and other — audiences must 
improve through the slow process of education, or a 



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AMERICAN DRAMA 673 

radical change mnst be made in the chief place and 
conditions of prodaction. Until onr plays are 
written, produced, and acted for initial and fate- 
deciding audiences of reasonable understanding and 
taste, the American drama is likely to remain the 
negligible quantity it has seemed to many dear- 
seeing critics. 

Chablton Andbbws. 



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o 

XI 



See design, pege 679 



674 



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PLATING HAMLET AS SHAKESPEARE 
STAGED IT. n* 

T is extremely inconyenient on the mod- 
em stage to change the scene as often 
as Shakespeare does, and especially to 
intercalate a scene. On his stage it was 
easy. 

The fore stage scene of the announce- 
ment to Hamlet in the morning of his 
father's appearing before the sentinels can^ after 
Hamlet's agreement to watch with them on the walls 
at midnight, close fitly on the original stage with the 
wish, — ^** Would the night were come!'* It can close 
so because in the interim before the night could 
come, a scene between Laertes, Ophelia and Polonius 
at Polonius 's house, requisite not alone to make the 
lapse of half a day plausible but also to open the 
under plot that ought to be shown in a first act, could 
be intercalated. 

The place arranged for this on Shakespeare's 
stage is interesting. The proscenium doors on 
either side of the middle stage to right and left on 
an oblique line, could represent such localities as 
Polonius 's house on one side and the King's chapel 
on the other. The spaces behind these doors could 
not be seen into when the doors were open. They 
could not supply practicable interiors, like the cen- 
tral rear stage interior in the tower. But, as Shake- 
speare 's ingenuity employs these pseudo-interiors, 
they are almost equally effective. Taking all the 

'Gopjright, 1915, by Charlotte Porter. Ckmeluded from tlie 
AnguBt number of Thb Drama. 

675 



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676 PLATING HAMLET 

plays together, there are certain signs to know 
whether a house scene is placed actually within the 
central tower at the rear or is simulated cleverly as 
a house scene by means of the action of going out or 
coming in or lingering about at one or the other of 
these opposite doors. The house of Polonius was 
staged, I think, at the left proscenium door. Laertes 
and his sister could appear here to bid each other 
farewell, by opening this door from the inside upon 
their entrance, coming on stage together, lingering 
about and talking there just as people really do 
under precisely such circumstances of leavetaking. 
After a while Polonius comes upon them from within 
this supposed house. Ophelia has her back to her 
father because she is facing Laertes as he is on his 
way off outside. Naturally she is not the one to see 
her father first. Laertes is the one to do so, for he 
is facing the door, having turned ba<^ to talk to her. 
The old man had said his good-bye to his son before. 
Laertes sees his father's reproachful face and at 
once adroitly tries to anticipate his blame of him 
for lingering so long— ** But here my Father comes. 
Occasion smiles upon a second leave.'' But Polonius, 
having fretted at him for delaying— ** Yet heere, 
Laertes," then keeps him as long again, in love 
with his own wisdom. After that, he makes Ophelia 
satisfy his curiosity and let him know what Laertes 
has been saying to her. Nothing like "these 
tedious old fooles" for making a day pass imagi- 
natively on the stage I Readily do we believe, after 
this, that midnight has had time to come when Ham- 
let reappears. 

The modem stage affords us no such natural 
chance for a plausible lapse of time. On top of the 
morning comes midnight. The rest of the day 
that Hamlet wishes were over may be imagined, to 



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PLATING HAMLET 677 

1>e sure, in modern reproductions, as spent in scene 
shifting. Down comes the curtain on Hamlet's 
^sh. When it rises, it rises on the realization of 
Ms wish, granted by the stage hands. The Polonius 
house scene, for modem convenience of putting to- 
gether scenes requiring the same set, is transposed 
way on into the second act. 

Shut doors below again in the rear stage (see the 
preceding article) and cresset moonlight on the walls 
above them are all the scenic preparations required 
for the next scene with the ghost, as Shakespeare 
staged it. Horatio and Marcellus have the air of 
already having been on watch, as before agreed, and 
of now meeting and ushering Hamlet out on ^Hhe 
platforme,'' as he is just appearing for the first time 
from the guard room represented by the upper stage 
interior. Hence his query, according to the folio 
text, as if he were now first feeling the bite of the 
night air — ^**Is it very coldf 

They take up their positions, Horatio to right, 
Marcellus to left of him. So now, Horatio is first 
to see the Qhost as it approaches from the left. 
When the Qhost addresses itself especially to Ham- 
let and beckons him to a **more removed ground,*' 
the two figures pass from view around the right cor- 
ner of the tower and follow the walk along the west 
side. Horatio's fear of the dreadful cliff side of 
the fortress, so precipitous that the rock beetles 
over its base into the sea, leads the audience to sup- 
pose that this steep place is on the unseen side of 
the walls opposite the front before them. Toward 
it Horatio thinks that the Ghost has taken Hamlet. 
Thither, after a little, he and Marcellus follow in 
quest of the Prince. But they do not find him for a 
long time. 

Where do Hamlet and the Ghost reappear? 



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678 PLATING HAMLET 

Where do Horatio and Marcellns find Hamlet alone 
finallyf 

On the modem stage, at ** Another part of the 
platform." But this change of scene is again an 
eighteenth century editor's scene setting. It is 
Capell's, not Shakespeare's. 

]bi Shakespeare's ori^nal production it is clear 
that instead of finding him on the opposite side of 
the fortress, they find him at last on the ground 
leveL 

Here an unquiet nightwalking spirit, forced to 
return beneath the sod at. cockcrow, may fitly seem 
to do what the Ghost does : ** Scent the morning air" 
from the turf and notice that the glow worm * * gins to 
pale his uneffectual Fire." Here, after he bids his 
son adieu and returns to his grave, he may seem to 
work his way unseen under ground, like an **old 
Mole" or **Pioner" or a **Truepenny" in the **Cel- 
larage," as Hamlet calls him. Thus he may be 
ready, as in due time he is, repeatedly to second the 
oath to secrecy with his sepulchral **Sweare." Thus 
he may obey Shakespeare's own stage direction: 
* * Ghost cries under the stage. ' ' This direction is left 
out by modem editors. 

The stage business, to repeat, calls for a short 
seeming disappearance of Hamlet and the Ghost 
along the walls aloft, for their descent inside the 
tower unseen, down the right rear stairs leading to 
the lower stage level, and for their speedy reappear- 
ance down there after only six lines of dialogue have 
time to be spoken by Horatio and Marcellus on the 
walls above. As soon as these two finish their six 
lines up there and pass out of sight on the westward 
walk around the tower — in pursuit of Hamlet, as 
they think — ^Hamlet and the Ghost emerge below in 
the shade of the ** Orchard" at the eastern side of 



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PLATING HAMLET 



679 



the tower, ready to continue the action of the play. 
Now, of course, they are in the very ** Orchard*' 
where the elder Hamlet was murdered while he 
slept. Where else could the Ghost tell his story so 







effectively? Where else could the manner of the 
poisoning be so veritably described and the testi- 
mony as to the whole deed done there be brought 
home to his son so impressively? Where else could 
the Ghost as an actor be so practically placed to 



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680 PLATING HAMLET 

use all his time till dawn should summon him in 
telling his tale and then be able to make his fitting 
exit by sinking down through the trap to the cellar 
under the stage whence he had to be ready upon 
his cues to cry, **Swearef 

If modem producers had not followed the editors' 
stage directions, if they had seen that Shakespeare 
makes it perfectly plain to his audience that the hon- 
est Ghost leads Hamlet into no such place on the 
**cliffe side of the fortress,*' as Horatio describes, 
and that he and Marcellus are led on a wild goose 
chase in going there, while the play is meantime 
being carried on down on the ground below, surely 
they could scarcely have missed the dramatic com- 
pulsion upon Hamlet to choose the same place — 
the ** Orchard,'* the scene of the murder — ^for the 
players to appear in when they were to play ** Some- 
think like the murder of my Father before mine 
Unkle/' 

The **banke of Flowers'* prescribed in Shake- 
speare's own stage directions for the preliminary 
**Dumb Show" confirms all the other indications 
that the play scene was intended to be placed not 
indoors but outdoors where the hidden murder could 
be ^*as lively painted as the deed was done." Here 
the dumb show could be peculiarly searching in 
catching the ** conscience of the king." A deed 
played as it was alleged by the Ghost to have actu- 
ally been done in the same place and way would be 
irresistible, at once; yet, thus enacted without a 
word being said, could not easily be quarrelled with 
by the most arbitrary monarch. Clearly it could 
not be, under the circumstances, by one possessed 
of such extraordinary powers of craft and caution 
as Claudius had shown in the concealment of his 
foul deed. 



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PLATING HAMLET 681 

And if I on top of the dumb show, it were done 
over again, with words, how could any human being 
remain discreet and give no sign of the thumbscrew! 

The stricken and groping silence of the king's 
look, when he was first made uneasy by the dumb 
show done in the very place of his secret deed, while 
yet afraid to betray by any sign that he had put on 
so utterly anonymous a shoe, could be tremendously 
poignant under the conditions as originally planned 
of the double echo in the ** Orchard*' both of the 
reality to him, and of the Ghost's prior account of 
it to Hamlet before the audience. 

As presented by modem producers, it is done over 
twice in an alcove interior behind a drawn aside 
curtain in a place having no such associations for 
anybody — ^King or Ghost or Hamlet or audience; 
when it is arranged inside **a hall in the castle" — 
again a scene setting that is Capell's, not Shake- 
speare's — it does not so neatly match its title of 
**Miching Malicho." It does not overwhelmingly 
**mean mischief." 

A curtain for the play scene was not an essential 
for Shakespeare. Modem managers merely impose 
upon him their anachronistic habits of thought. 
They do it at their peril. The bite of the whole play 
scene for the King, its wormwood for the Queen, 
and the exactness of it all as Hamlet's skilful test 
of the Ghost's word consists in its taking place 
where the deed was so stealthily done and up to 
then so successfully concealed. The final touch- 
stone is Hamlet's cry, **He poysons him i' th' Gar- 
denr 

When the King cannot stand another word and 
flees the repeated sight of what he did in secret in 
that garden to his brother, the guilty wretch must, 
moreover, when he makes his exit, if the play scene 



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682 PLAYING HAMLET 

is put in the center, go right toward the murder 
scene that he so instinctively flees. This ought to 
be a stage impossibility. It was an impossibility 
as originally designed, because it was placed on the 
outer stage, to the left, alongside of the trees, while 
the court was grouped to the right along the oppo- 
site side, conveniently near enough to the rear stage 
interior for a few chairs to be brought out readily 
for their Majesties, while Hamlet, Ophelia, and the 
younger people could be seated on the rush-strewn 
floor further down stage as if upon the turf, the 
whole scene taking place outdoors in front of the 
castle. This arrangement left the rear stage in the 
center free for the flight of the Elng thither. He 
flies as if to the house for safety, but he is afraid 
of the dark now and cries as he goes, "Give me some 
light! Away.'* 

Others may have been luckier than I, but I have 
never seen in any modem production that splendid 
rush of red, flaring torches after the panic-stricken 
King. I have never enjoyed on the stage the notable 
symbolism of the whole court in full rout crying, 
'^Lights, Lights, Lights.^' 

Yet Shakespeare's own stage direction at the en- 
try of the King to the play scene calls for the attend- 
ance upon him of **his Guard carrying Tordies'* 
and prepares for the picturesque exit so symbolic- 
ally true to his drama and indicating also at the 
same time that the scene takes place at night. (Pri- 
vate plays at court or castle usually took place at 
night, public plays in the afternoon.) 

Why do modem producers make the text a dead 
letter? Why do they leave out these beautiful 
torches! Is it not because they relegate them to the 
footlights and border lights, just as they relegate 
the woods and hills to the back drop! And of course 



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PLAYING HAMLET 683 

there they have no weight in the stage business 
and dramatic action. 

At breathless times in Shakespeare's plot, at the 
most oscillating moments in its psychology, to the 
usnal unbroken continuity are added scenes that 
run abreast and even overlap. But just when he 
overlaps and races his scenes, the modem reproduo* 
tion of them is slower than usuaL 

One lives scenically from hand to mouth on the 
scenery shifting stage. The play is always needing 
to be stopped in order to make a change in the set- 
ting. One lives forehandedly, on the contrary, on 
the stage of Shakespeare with prevision and pro- 
vision for all future scenic wants. 

Like a god or a bird in the air, the spectators 
could look on at the mimic world setting forth the 
story of Hamlet's tragic activities and see all be- 
falling naturally within about two hours' time. 

The adaptation of this play to a stage technique 
exactly the converse of that for which it was origi- 
nally designed by cm author-actor-manager of genius 
and practiced proficiency in the use of his own stage 
technique means disintegration, disillusion and de- 
lay at just the critical moment chosen by the dra- 
matist for making his scenes race abreast and for 
knitting into one action the results of the foregoing 
action and the portents of the oncoming one. 

Such a critical moment comes in ** Hamlet" di- 
rectly after the play scene. 

The flight of King and Court from the play leaves 
Hamlet and Horatio on the deserted f orestage con- 
fronting the guilty, open secret. They are left alone 
but for one moment of whirling sensation. Hamlet 
has verified the King's hidden crime. But he has 
also verified the King's need to fear him. Dramatic 
consequences pile up, both ways, immediately. 



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684 PLAYING HAMLET 

Hamlet's false friends, the two spies, come back 
ostensibly to bid him go to his mother, bat also 
to keep track of him, to hem him in. **Why do you 
go abont to recover tiie wind of meet** asks Hamlet, 
**as if you would drive me into a toylef The 
speech implies the right stage business. Polonius 
comes, too, from the Queen to urge the same mes- 
sage. In the same manner he also tracks him about 
and finds it good policy to ^^Foole him to the top 
of his benf 

When the dangerous Prince relieves their imme- 
diate anxiety by promising to go to his mother, and 
then frees himself of all surveiUance, he is left alone 
at last for his soliloquy. In it he makes clear his 
readiness at this fitting midnight hour to 'Mo such 
bitter business as the Day would quake to look on." 
The purpose held in his **firme bosome*' is compli- 
cated only by the twofold nature of his charge from 
his father — ^to spare his mother's life and soul while 
he does vengeance on his uncle's. 

The Ghost's word has been proved. Hamlet is 
ready. The audience has a right to expect that re- 
venge will follow. The only question is in what 
order will he go about his twofold charge t 

It is at just this point of balance that Shake- 
speare's scenes run abreast and even overlap. For 
Hamlet makes no exit here on Shakespeare's stage. 
The scene does not change to "A room in the castle,'* 
as Capell arranged. The curtain does not fall to 
break up the continuity. Instead, Hamlet turns off 
from way down stage where he had been dogged by 
Polonius when he had pointed out to him the camel- 
weasel-cloud that was ** backed like a whale," and he 
keeps the expectancy of the audience upon him while 
he passes up and then along the orchard side of the 
stage, as if on the way inside to his mother. 



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PLATING HAMLET 685 

At that instant the King comes out of the rear 
stage in talk with the two spies. At once Hamlet 
halts, keeping himself in ambnsh at the left side of 
the projecting tower where he is thrown in shadow 
by the bushes. Here he watches the three standing 
in front of the rear stage and overhears the King 
arranging to ship him with the spies to England. 
He lurks there till the precious pair go and Polonius 
has come forward toward the l^ng from behind and 
spoken to him from inside the rear stage where 
Hamlet could not see or hear him. 

It comes out shortly after that Hamlet has over- 
heard this plan discussed just outside the rear stage 
to send him to England, but that he has not over- 
heard the arrangement outlined by Polonius just 
inside the rear stage to spy upon him during his 
interview with his mother so as to report it to the 
King before he goes to bed. Of the one plan it is 
clear that Hamlet knows, of the other, that he 
knows nothing. ^'I must to England,'' he says to 
the Queen. **You know thatf But when he stabs 
through the Arras at the spying Polonius and the 
Queen exclaims, **What have you donef he replies, 
**Nay, I know not. Is it the Kingf 

After speaking to the King, Polonius withdraws 
further within the rear stage interior. Here he may 
be seen joining the Queen in awaiting the arrival of 
Hamlet. The audience at this point thus enjoys a 
triple scene. It is practically all one to the onlook- 
ers. It is threefold for the actors. The King then 
passes out on the middle stage on his way to cross 
over to the right proscenium door and pray at the 
**ChappeL'' An image and shrine placed here 
doubtless set the scene sufficiently. 

The King is no sooner in motion, with his back 
turned to the left side of the stage, than Hamlet 



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686 PLATING HAMLET 

seizes Ms chance to steal forward from the left. He 
follows the Eang stealthily and crosses behind him, 
dagger drawn. 

The vivid flow and suspense of the action must 
have been tremendous for the audience at this in- 
stant. Whether the Prince will abandon the mission 
to his mother and kill the King at once is put in vis- 
ible balance, while the scene itself is in flow, with 
action proceeding on the fore stage, in the rear 
stage, and outside to the right and left with the 
poised multiplicity impossible on any stage less sup- 
ple than Shakespeare's. 

Critics of Hamlet's force of purpose fail to reckon 
with Shakespeare's plan for him as demonstrated 
by Shakespeare 's stage. They forget that if Hamlet 
had now lost sight of the deeper realm of a complete 
vengeance on the King, soul and body, and had 
swooped to his merely bodily revenge at that mo- 
ment the play would have had to stop in the 
(middle. It was Shakespeare's job to impel that 
swoop suddenly till it seemed irresistibly imminent, 
rand then at the same instant by an act of will as 
,vivid and compulsive in Hamlet to prevent it and 
set free the new current of action to seek the deeper 
^annel. 

;j Hamlet's new act of will is deadly in a deeper 
%ense. He resolves not merely to kill the praying 
jmurderer but to damn his souL He sheathes his 
^ord only in order to let it know **a more horrid 
iient." The physical tension is relieved by tighten- 
ifflg the psychological screw. The greatness of 
fihakespeare's play is thereby attained. 
J To powers larger than any to be centered in a 
brash individual deed of bodily vengeance the just 
:f>erdition of the King's soul is transferred. But 
jQlis transfer is due to Hamlet. And Hamlet becomes 



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PLAYING HAMLET 687 

at once the creature and executive of these larger 
I>ower8. They take command immediately within 
the murderer's mind. Their **Amen. So be if 
upon Hamlet's resolution is immediately enacted; 
for Hamlet's exit to go to his mother is followed 
by the King's exit, incapable of prayer. 

With the closing up of the double way of action 
toward both the Bang and the Queen that seemed in 
balance, the multiplicity of scene clears up, too, and 
settles down simply to the one scene with the Queen 
inside the rear stage. There she and Polonius are 
waiting. Now they hear Hamlet calling ** within" 
on his way to them the words that signify with whom 
he has chosen that the next step in the action shall 
deal: ** Mother, Mother, Mother." 

Because of the wrong exit for Hamlet after the 
play scene, the change of scene then, and the failure 
to grasp Shakespeare's stage business, it remains 
an insolvable mystery on the modem stage how Ham- 
let knew of the King's plan to send him to England. 
The Forbes-Robertson stage version is the only one 
I have noticed that has been consistent enough to 
cut out of the closet scene the evidence Hamlet gives 
in it that he has overheard the King's plan. But 
then the same version cuts out also, as many others 
do, every thing pertaining to the trip to England. 
With it goes everything that sets forth Hamlet's 
prompt counterscheme by which he outwits the King 
and saves his own head at the expense of the lives 
of the King's creatures. Hamlet's character is 
shorn of its virility by such a cut as that. Without 
the evidence that incident affords of his unflinching 
energy of will in checkmating his uncle's guile, he 
would come nearer to justifying the critics who ac- 
cuse him of laxity of purpose. He would then give 
no sign of doing just what he declares he will do at 



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688 PLATING HAMLET 

the close of the closet scene— ** delve helow*' the 
mines the Eing had laid for his life and ^^ hoist the 
enginer with his own petar/' 

As soon as Hamlet leaves his mother, after the 
closet scene, bearing away with him the body of 
PoloninSy well aware of all that his death means for 
himself and saying of it as he goes, '^This man shall 
set me packing'*, the King enters to find the Qneen 
still sobbing because of Hamlet's words to her. The 
King's first utterance is to insist on knowing what 
** these sighes," ** these profound heaves" of hers 
mean. Obviously there is no break of scene here 
in the original setting. Yet just here not merely a 
scene but also an act division now cuts in that is 
due to an eighteenth century editor. Act HI is 
forced to close with Hamlet's leaving his mother. 
Act IV to open with the entrance of the King to her 
in ** Another room of the castle." This is one more 
of tke scattering ritartando effects spoiling Shake- 
speare 's vivid, unified celerity. 

From the play scene on to the closet scene, and 
from the closet scene on to the scenes where Hamlet 
runs away and is brought back ** guarded" to be 
taken aboard ship for England ** to-night," there is 
neither let nor pause in the continuity of scene. 
Then when Fortinbras and his **armie" march 
**over the stage," comes a decided break. But until 
then all the dramatic consequences of Hamlet's play 
— ^the King's counterschemes, Hamlet's resolve to 
kill the King's very soul, the accident of stabbing 
Polonius, and the search that follows first for the 
body, then for Hamlet — a series of excitements keep- 
ing the whole house up and awake all night — all the 
scenes proceed breathlessly. They are all so closely 
linked and interlocked that they require to be visual- 
ized by eye and mind as a dramatic unit if the fibre 



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PLAYING HAMLET 689 

of Hamlet's character and the design of the tragic 
solution are to be properly grasped 

The profound virility of EEamlet's nature suffers 
both by the cuts that shorten the play enough for 
production with shifting scenery in one evening, and 
by a stage that disconnects, retards, obscures and 
misrepresents the evidence of Hamlet's continuous 
activity of power at the dramatic moment of intense 
dimax. 

There is some excuse for misconception of Ham- 
let's character, not due to Shakespeare, from the 
fact that the play, as its creator planned to set it 
forth, is never seen for the scenery. 

Chabjlottb Pobteb. 



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THE MODERN STAGE SOCIETY 

|WENTY.SIX years ago, a group of lit- 
erary men in Paris started a movement 
to produce plays refased by ordinary 
managers, and to give them a chance to 
be seen by the public. 

The following season saw this idea put 
into practice in Berlin. The finances 
taken ca^re of by subscriptions from interested peo- 
ple, authors and actors set to work to further the 
natxiralistic movement, to present new plays of ar- 
tistic and literary merit. Ibsen, Oscar Wilde, D'An- 
nunzio, Maeterlinck, Brieux, Bernard Shaw, more 
than one Russian playwright, were thus given a 
hearing; and the Berlin introduction proved to be 
for a general European audience, as plays succeed- 
ing there were taken up by other theatres. Gerhart 
Hauptmann, Wedekind, Schnitzler, are among the 
younger dramatists who there found an opportunity 
and an audience, when every other playhouse was 
closed to them. 

The Berlin Freie Buhne movement has spread to 
other cities. The Theatre Libre of M. Antoine in 
Paris, the highly artistic playhouse managed by 
Stanislavsky in Moscow, the Independent Stage in 
London, all have the same underlying principles. 

And now it has come to New York. Tried out in 
two performances of Ibsen's John Oahriel Borhman 
last spring, the experiment proved a decided suc- 
cess for the actor-manager, Emanuel Reicher, one 
of the group that has made the history of the 
movement. 
Plans are now definitely announced for a seven 

690 



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MODERN STAGE SOCIETY 691 

months' season, opening the middle of November; 
and snbscribers to the Modern Stage are offered 
plays of many nations, of artistic and human value, 
of literary worth, the type of play never accepted by 
managers whose standards are box office receipts, 
tlie press, and the theatre-going public. 

The repertory includes the work of authors of five 
nationalities. The Finger of God, According to Dar- 
win, and a comedy, The Nohle Lord, three one-act 
plays by Percival Wilde ; Gerhart Hauptmann's The 
Weavers; The Girl in the Coffin, by Theodore Drei- 
ser, a very fine piece of naturalistic drama, dealing 
with a workingmen^s strike; Anton Tchechoff's 
Uncle Va/nya, a drama of Russian life in the lonely 
country, picturing a peasantry enslaved by want and 
toil, and an educated upper class enslaved by idle- 
ness and tedium, noteworthy for the poignant truth 
of the picture and the tender beauty of the last 
scene; When the New Wvne Blooms, a comedy of 
Bjomstjeme Bjomson^s; Ibsen's Rosmersholm, one 
of Herr Reicher's greatest successes in Germany; a 
comedy. The Dollar, and The King, by David PinsM, 
the Russian Jew who is so thoroughly an American, 
though from principle he writes in Yiddish only; a 
romantic scene called Madonna Dianora,hy the Aus- 
trian i)oet von Hofmannsthal; and Papa, a comedy 
by a southern girl, Zoe Aken, very original, slightly 
grotesque, so delightful and light that it suggests 
French authorshi;>— these make up the seven pro- 
grams to be given. 

Not serious and ** high-brow*' plays, not gloomy 
plays, not problem plays, not comedies, per se — ^for 
one may have as redeeming and uplifting qualities 
as the others — the sole question in choosing the 
repertory has been : Has the play intrinsicaUy ar- 
tistic and human value t 



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692 MODERN STAGE SOCIETY 

All performances are to be given in English, and 
by actors of American birth. The same idea holds 
in the several Freie Biihne in Germany, in London, 
Moscow, Paris ; the language of the listeners is al- 
ways used. The value of an artistic play, if it is 
really there, cannot be lost in translation. It will 
shine out, despite the handicaps. 

The plans of the Modern Stage differ from the 
ordinary management in four ways. First of all, 
they are not concerned with a long run. The pri- 
mary aim is to introduce certain plays to the sub- 
scribers. This is a direct help to other producers, 
for the rights to a play which has been well tested 
here and promises a commercial success may be 
purchased. 

The appeal is only to those persons who are inter- 
ested in the movement, and who are prepared for 
what they will see. The passers-by, the ordinary 
theatre-goers, want to see a show. They might be 
shocked and walk out indignantly. Development of 
the movement would be doubtfuL This is avoided 
by having no box office, but an audience of snb- 
scribers. 

**The play's the thing,** and the first considera- 
tion is given to the acting. Lighting, costumes, set- 
ting, all the cunning devices used in the theatres, 
are here made use of, not for themselves, but for one 
purpose, — ^to create the needed atmosphere. They 
must be suitable, but never so aggressive as to be- 
come objectionable. The frame should not J)e no- 
ticed to the neglect of the picture. 

The actors, and their presentation of the charac- 
ters, are thus considered of most importance. In the 
trial of applicants, they are given a few little scenes 
to read, and Herr Belcher's decision rests on their 
power of expression. He is not concerned with the 



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MODERN STAGE SOCIETY 693 

words^ nor with the actual acting^ not even with the 
question, ^^Is this the right expression for this par- 
ticular scene!'* But, **Has this applicant ability to 
express — something, no matter whatf Most re- 
markable of all, there is no concern for types. It is 
never, **Does she look the part, in height and build!'* 
— ^another proof that the ordinary play appeals first 
of all to the eye, 

Herr Beicher has no stars — ^no star plays, where 
every scene must build up to an outwardly effective 
climax; no star parts, always needing, and taking, 
the center of the stage, and dwarfing all the others; 
no star actors, usurping the applause and the salary. 
The aim is to build up an ensemble, a company which 
will be life-like in whatever play is given. Each may 
have a chance to do a big part, then a small one. 
The salaries are based on tike actor's value to the 
company, not on the part he plays that month. 

Contributing in no small measure to this ideal is 
a member of the company who also serves as one of 
the assistant stage-managers ; who plays with equal 
skill and enthusiasm all her parts, whether smaU or 
great — ^Miss Hedwig Beicher, the able daughter of 
the man to whom was due much of the Berlin suc- 
cess, and to whom will be due the American success. 

Instead of a program, Herr Beicher plans to 
issue each month a magazine of some sixteen pages. 
This is to be given to the subscribers when the seats 
are reserved. It will contain a biography of the 
author, comments by his contemporaries, Herr 
Belcher's point of view on the play and his reasons 
for including it, brief statements from the leading 
actors about their roles, and when possible an article 
by the author himself, together with an announce- 
ment for the following month. 

The Modern Stage offers drama, with a high ar- 



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694 MODERN STAGE SOCIETY 

tistic standard, to interested i)eople who can afford 
one, two, or three-dollar seats. But this price is 
prohibitive to many who are longing to see vital, 
human plays, well presented. An auxiliary society 
is being formed, caUed the American People's Thec^ 
tre, like the Freie Volkshuhne in Berlin. With sub- 
scriptions there from one mark to fifty pf ennige, it 
has proved both an artistic and financial success. 
After twenty-five years the members built their own 
theatre, and now keep their own company, having as 
their director Max Beinhardt! 

Prices in New York range from seventy-five cents 
to twenty-five. Subscriptions are available for 
workingmen's unions, teachers and students, derks, 
artists and artisans. 

With the same foundations here as in Germany, 
the same ideals, it is hoped that the artistic and 
financial development will be the same, and there is 
no reason why it should not. To present worth- 
while plays of all countries; to inspire the native 
dramatist to express himself, to write something out 
of his own soul, not considering receipts at the box 
office, not compromising with the fickle likings of 
public, management, and press ; and to let him know 
that here is a theatre that will give him a diance to 
be heard and seen, to be introduced to a friendly 
audience — ^this is the aim of the Modern Stage. 

Gbaob Huhphbxt. 



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THE LOVER'S GAEDEN 

A FLOWEB MASQUE 

Arranged from Shakespeare for the Tercentenarj 
by AUce C. D. BUey 

^^MmsuMMEB Night's Dbeam/' 

IFrom opposite sides, a Faiby and Puck enter.] 

Puck. How now, spirit! whither wander yout 
Faiby. Over hill, over dale. 

Thorough bnsh, thorough brier. 

Over park, over pale. 

Thorough flood, thorough fire, 

I do wander everywhere. 

Swifter than the moon's sphere; 

And I serve the fairy queen. 

To dew her orbs upon the green. 

The cowslips tall her pensioners be : 

In their gold coats spots you see; 

Those be rubies, fairy favors. 

In those freckles live their savours : 

I must go seek some dewdrops here, 

And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear. 

Farewell, thou lob of spirits; I'll be gone: 

Our queen and all her elves come here anon. 

[Puck and the Faiby go out.] 

• • • . • • • • 

[To music, TiTANiA a/nd her train of smaller fairies 

enter. Fairies and elves group themselves 

about the throne.] 

TiTA. Come, now a roundel and a fairy song; 

Then, for the third part of a minute, hence; 

695 



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696 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Some to kill cankers in the mnsk-rose bnds; 

Some war with rere-mice for their leathern 
wings, 

To make my small elves coats; and some keep 
back 

The clamorous owl, that nightly hoots and won- 
ders 

At onr qnaint spirits. Sing me now asleep; 

Then to your offices, and let me rest. 

Song. 
Pnt. Faiby. You spotted snakes with double tongue, 
Thorny hedgehogs, be not seen; 
Newts and blind-worms, do no wrong, 
Gome not near our fairy queen. 

Chobus, 
Philomel, with melody 
Sing in our sweet lullaby; 
LuUa, lulla, lullaby, luUa, luUa, lullaby: 
Never harm. 
Nor spell, nor charm. 
Come our lovely lady nigh; 
So, good night, with lullaby. 
Fib. Faiby. Weaving spiders, come not here; 
Hence, you long-legg'd spinners, hence! 
Beetles black, approach not near; 
Worm nor snail, do no offence. 

Chobxjs. 
Philomel, with melody, etc. 

Sbc. Faiby. Hence, away! now all is well: 
One aloof stand sentinel. 

[The Fairies leave. Titania sleepsJ] 

[Puck comes in tuith Obebon.] 



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THE LOVER'S GARDEN 697 

Obbboh. Hast thou the flower theret Welcome 
wanderer. 

Puox. Ay, there it is. 

Obb. I pray thee, give it me. 

I know a bank where the wild thyme blows, 
Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows; 
Quite over-canopied with lascious woodbine. 
With sweet mnsk-roseSy and with eglantine : 
There sleeps Titania sometime of tihe night, 
Lnll'd in these flowers with dances and delight; 
And there the snake throws her enamell'd skin, 
Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in : 
And with the juice of this I^ streak her eyes. 
And make her full of hateful fantasies. 

[Obxbon discovers Titania asleep. He approaches 
her with the fiower and touches her 
eyes. Puck nms out.] 
What thou seest when thou dost wake. 
Do it for thy true-love take; 
Love and languish for his sake : 
Be it ounce, or cat, or bear, 
Pard, or boar with bristled hair. 
In thy eyes that shall appear 
When thou wakest, it is thy dear: 
Wake when some vile thing is near. 

[Obebon goes out.] 

AotIII,So. L 
[PuoK comes in, leading Bottoic with an ass's 
head.] 
Bottom. [Sings.] The ousel cock, so blade of hue, 
With orange-tawny bill. 
The throstle wi^ his note so true, 
The wren with little quill; 
[AU the little fairies re-enter on tip4oe.] 



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698 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Ttta. [Awakening.^ What angel wakes me from 

my flowery bed! 
Bottom. [Sings.^ The finch, the sparrow, and the 
lark, 
The plain-song cackoo gray, 
Whose note full many a man doth mark. 
And dares not answer nay; — 
TiTA. Thou art as wise as thon art beautiful. 
Bottom. Not so, neither : but if I had wit enough to 
get out of this wood, I have enough to serve 
mine own turn. 
Tita. Out of this wood do not desire to go : 

Thou shalt remain here, whether thou wilt or no. 

I am a spirit of no common rate : 

The summer still doth tend upon my state; 

And I do love thee: therefore, go with me; 

I'll give thee fairies to attend on thee; 

And they shall fetch thee jewels from the deep, 

And sing, while thou on pressed flowers dost 

sleep: 
And I will purge thy mortal grossness so, 
That thou shalt like an airy spirit go. 
Peaseblossom! Cobweb 1 Mothl and Mustard- 
seed! 

[Pbaseblossom, Cobwbb, Moth, and Mustabdseed 

Fibst Faiby. Beady. 

Sbgond Faiby. And I. 

Thibd Faiby. And I. 

Foubth Faiby. And L 

All. Where shall we gof 

Tita. Be kind and courteous to this gentleman; 
Hop in his walks, and gambol in his eyes ; 
Feed him with apricocks and dewberries, 
With purple grapes, green figs, and mulberries; 



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TEE LOVER'S GARDEN 699 

The honey-bags steal from the humble-bees. 
And for night-tapers crop their waxen thighs. 
And light them at the fiery glow-worm's eyes, 
To have my love to bed and to arise ; 
And plnck the wings from painted butterflies, 
To fan the moonbeams from his sleeping eyes : 
Nod to him, elves, and do him courtesies. 

FiBST Faiby. Hail, mortal 1 

Second Faibt. Hail! 

TmBD Faiby. Hail I 

FoTjBTH Faiby. Hail I 

[AU how before the throne. Pbaseblossoh, Oobwbb, 
Moth, and Mustabdseed run out.] 

THE FAIBY DANCE. 

[AU fairies, elves, etc., who are on stage, now dance 
before the throne, while Titakia and Bottom hold 
converse. At the end of the dance, all fairies 
return to their original positions in the picture. 
Re-enter Peaseblossom, leading on all of the 
Spring Flowers except the daffodils, which are 
used later. Peaseblossom makes obeisance before 
the throne while the flowers dance; then she comes 
down center front and does solo dance supported 
by the spring flowers massed bach of her, also 
dancing. This group ivUl be the pale colors.] 

DANCE OF SPBINO. 

[At the end of the dance they take positions on the 

stage.] 



**TiiE Tempest,'* Act IV, Sc. I. 

Ibis enters. 

Ceres, most bounteous lady, thy rich leas 

Of wheat, rye, barley, vetches, oats, and peas; 



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700 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Thy tnrfy mountains where live nibbling sheep, 
And flat meads thatch 'd with stover, them to 

keep; 
Thy banks with pioned and twilled brims. 
Which spongy April at thy best betrims, 
To make cold nymphs chaste crowns; and thy 

broom-groves, 
Whose shadow the dismissed bachelor loves, 
Being lass-lorn; thy pole-dipt vineyard; 
And thy sea-marge, sterile and rocky-hard. 
Where thou thyself dost air; — ^the queen o* the 

sky, 
Whose watery arch and messenger am I, 
Bids thee leave these; and witih her sovereign 

grace. 
Here, on this grass-plot, in this very place. 
To come and si)ort : — ^her i>eacocks fly amain: 
Approach, rich Ceres, her to entertain. 

Mxjsio. 

[Cebbs enters, attended hy Summer Flowers, Walter 
and Rainbow Nymphs, and a troup of Peacocks 
— all these, of course, to be impersonated by gids. 
As Cebbs and her attendants, the Peacocks, make 
obeisance before the throne, the Flowers and 
Nymphs dance. These take the more brUUant 
colors.] 

Thb Dance of Sxjmmeb. 



*'Thb Tempest,*' Act V, So. 

Abiel enters, singing: 

Where the bee sucks, there suck I: 

In a cowslip's bell I lie ; 

There I couch when owls do cry. 



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THE LOVER'S GARDEN 701 

On the bat's wing I do fly 

After summer merrily. 

Merrily, merrily shaU I live now 

Under the blossom that hangs on the bon^ 

Musio. 

[MxrsTABDSBBD comes in, attended hy the Autumn 
Flowers J Fruits and a fiock of Butterflies. These 
give the deepest and richest color note. Mustabd- 
8BBD makes obeisance while the others dance, then 
comes forward in a solo dance before the rest.] 

The Danob op Autumn. 

[At the end of the dance, aU take positions on the 
stage. Moth and Cobweb enter, attended by a 
troup of Snowfiakes. This group, all in white, 
gives the highest color note. Moth and Oobwbb 
make obeisance while the Snowfiakes dance, th&n 
come forward in a duo dance.] 

Th» Dance op Wintbb, 

[At the end of the dance they take positions on the 
stage. Cebbs, attended by her peacocks, advances 
to the throne €md addresses Ibis and Tftania,] 

Act V, Sc. 1. 

Gsbbs. ^Haill many coloured messenger, that ne'er 
Dost disobey the wife of Jnpiter; 
Who, with thy saffron wings, ni)on my flowers 
Diffasest honey-drops, refreshing showers; 
And with each end of thy blue bow dost crown 
My bosky acres and my unshmbb'd down, 
Eich scarf to my proud earth; — ^why hath thy 

queen 
Summoned me hither, to this short-grass 'd 

greenf 



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702 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Ibis. A contract of tme love to celebrate. 
TiTAKiA. [Rising.] A contract of tme love to cele- 
brate/ 
[Within this Tme Love Oarden;— call Love 

herej^ 
And some donation freely we'll' estate 
On the blest lovers when they shall appear.' 



**Thb Winter's Talb/^ Act IV, So. IV. 

[Flobizel leads in Pebdita.] 

Plo. These your unusual weeds to each part of you 
Do give a life : no shepherdess, but Flora 
Peering in April's front. This your sheep- 
shearing 
Is as a meeting of the petty gods. 
And you the queen on 't * * * 

* Come, quench your blushes and present your- 

self* 
■That which you are, mistress o* the feast: 
come on, 

* And bid us welcome to your sheep-shearing, 

* As your good flock shall prosper. 

[Shepherds and Shepherdesses enter.] 

Pbbdita. Sirs,*^ welcome : 

It is my father's will I should take on me 
The hostess-ship o* the day. 

You're welcome to our shearing. 

'Note: Titania is here allowed to repeat Ceres' line. 

'Note: These lines are interpolated. 

•Note: "to'^ changed to "we'U." 

*Note: Lines 1, 2, 3 and 4 are, in the text, in the mouth of a 
shepherd. 

'Note: In the text, this is in the singular. 



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TEE LOVER'S GARDEN 703 

Dance of the Shepherds akd Shephsbdbssbs. 

[A Morris Dance.] 

Pebdita. [Distributing flowers.] 

Here's flowers for yon; 
Hot lavender^ mints, savory, marjoram; 
The marigold, that goes to bed wi' the snn 
And with him rises weeping: These are flowers 
Of middle snmmer, and I think they are given 
To men of middle age. [She gives them to an 

old shepherd.] 

You're very welcome. 
[Giving to Camillo, disguised as a shepherd.] 
I wonld I had some flowers o' the spring that 

might 
Become yonr time of day ; and yours, and yours, 
That wear upon your virgin branches yet 
Your maidenheads growing: O Proserpina 
For the flowers now, that frighted thou let'st 

fan 
Prom Dis's waggon! daffodils. 
That come before the swallow dares, and take 
The winds of March with beauty; violets dim, 
But sweeter than the lids of Juno's eyes 
Or Cytherea's breath; pale primroses. 
That die unmarried, ere they can behold 
Bright Phoebus in his strength, a malady 
Most incident to maids ; bold oxlips and 
The crown imperial; lilies of all Mnds, 
The flower-de-luce being one I *0, these I lack, 
To make you garlands of.' 

0, sweet Proserpina, come with fhy daffodils!^ 

[Prosbbpina dances in, attended by a group of 
Daffodils and a flock of Swallows in gold and 

'Note: This line is interpolated. 



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704 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Hack. They dance, Pbobebpika and Psbdita 
together.] 



Thb Daffodil Dancb. 
[At the end of the dance they take places.'^ 

*'The Wintbb's Talk,*' Act IV, Sc. m. 
AxTTOLYOUS enters, singing. 

When daffodils begin to peer, 
With heigh! the doxy over the dale, 

Why, then comes in the sweet o' the year; 
For the red blood reigns in the winter's pale. 

The white sheet bleaehing on the hedge. 
With height the sweet birds, O, how they 
sing! 

Doth set my pugging tooth on edge ; 
For a quart of ale is a dish for a king. 

The lark, that tirra-lyra chants, 

With heigh! with heigh! the thrush and the 
jay. 
Are summer songs for me and my aunts. 

While we lie tumbling in the hay. 

I have served Prince Florizel and in my time wore 
three-pile; but now I am out of service: 

But shall I go mourn for that, my deart 

The pale moon shines by night : 
And when I wander here and there, 

I then do most go right. 



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THE LOVER'8 GARDEN 705 

If tinkers may have leave to live, 

And bear the sow-skin budget, 
Then my aooonnt I well may give, 

And in the stocks avouch it 

Flobizbl. [ConUng down and pushing Autolyous 
away.] 
Out on yon, rascal!^ 

{He approaches PsBDrrA and leads her forward.] 

Act IV, So. IV. 

Thou dearest Perdita, 
lift np your countenance, as it were the day 
Of celebration of that nuptial which 
We two have sworn shall come. 

But come ; our dance, I pray : 
Your hand, my Perdita : so turtles pair. 
That never mean to part. 

PiBraTA« 111 swear for 'em. 

[They dance.] 

DaKOE of PeBDITA and FliOBIZEL. 

[At the end of the dance they take places.J 

^'BOMEO AND JUMBT,'' ACT 11, So. 11. 

[Masked dancers from the Capulet hall rush upon 
the stage in a wild dance, cross it and go out. 
BoMBO enters, his mask lifted, looking after the 
dancers in search of Juust. Juuet enters, fol- 
lowing him.] 

BoMBo. [Musing.] He jests at scars that never 
felt a wound. 

'Hole: Four words interpolated here. 



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706 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Jtjiaet. Hist! Borneo, hist I — 0, for a falconer's 
voice, 

To lure this tassel-gentle hack again! 

Borneo! 
BoMBO. [Turning.] 

It is my soul that calls npon my name : 

How silver-sweet sound lovers' tongues hy 
night, 

Like softest music to attending ears! 
JuuBT. Bomeo ! 

BoMEO. [Discovering Juubt.] My dearf 
JuuBT. At what o'clock tomorrow 

Shall I send to theeT 
BoMso. At the hour of nine. 

Juubt. I will not fail : 'tis twenty years till then. 

I have forgot why I did call thee hack. 
BoMEo. Let me stand here till thou remember it 
Juubt. I shall forget, to have thee still stand there^ 

Bemembering how I love thy company. 
BoMBo. And 111 still stay, to have thee still forget. 

Forgetting any other home but this. 
Juubt. 'Tis almost morning; I would have thee 
gone: 

And yet no farther than a wanton's bird. 

Who lets it hop a little from her hand. 

Like a poor prisoner in his twisted gyves, 

And with a silken thread plucks it back again, 

So loving-jealous of his liberty. 
BoMBO. I would I were thy bird. 
Juubt. Sweet, so would I: 

Yet I should kill thee with much cherishing. 

[Again the mashers rush on in a swirl of music and 
dance, taking Bombo and Juubt to a position on 
the stage.] 



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THE LOVER'S GARDEN 707 

^^Hamlet/' Act IV, So. V. 
[Opheua enters.] 
QpHXLiA. [Sings:] 

How should I your true love know 

Prom another onet 

By his cockle hat and staff 

Aiid his sandal shbon. 

He is dead and gone, lady, 

He is dead and gone; 

At his head a grass-green turf ^ 

At his heels a stone. 

Larded with sweet flowers; 

Which hewept to the grave did go 

With true-love showers. 

They hore him barefaced on the bier : 

Hey non nonhy, nonny, hey nonny: 

And in his grave rained many a tear, — 

Pare you well, my dove I 

You must sing down a-down. 

An you call him a^down-a. 

[She offers flowers to those near her.] 

There's rosemary, that's for remembrance: pray 
you, love, remember: and there is pansie^, that's for 
thoughts. There's fennel for you, and columbines: 
there's rue for you: and here's some for me: we 
may call it herb of grace o' Sundays: O, you must 
wear your rue with a difference. There's a daisy: 
I would give you some violets, but they withered all 
when my fattier died: they say a' made a good 
end, — 

[Sings.] For bonnie sweet Bobin is all my joy. 
And will a' not come again f 
And will a' not come againf 
No, no, he is dead. 



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708 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Go to thy death-bed, 
He never will come again. 

[She wanders to Pbosebfika, who comforts her.] 

''TwBLPTH Night/' Act II, So. IV. 

[Music. Musicians enter, playing on mandolins, etc. 
The DxTKB comes in with Viola.], 

DuKx. Come hither, boy: if ever thou shalt love, 
In the sweet pangs of it remember me; 
For such as I am all true lovers are, 
XJnstaid and skittish in all motions else. 
Save in the constant image of the creatore 
That is beloved. How dost thou like this tunef 

Viola. It gives a very echo to the seat 

Where love is throned. • • • Ay, but I 

know, — 
Too well what love women to men may owe : 
In faith they are as true of heart as we. 
My father had a daughter loved a man. 
As it might be, perhaps, were I a woman, 
I should love your lordship. 

DuKX. ^d what's her history! 

Viola. A blank, my lord. She never told her love. 
But let concealment, like a worm i' the bud. 
Feed on her damask cheek : She pined in thought 
And with a green and yellow melancholy 
She sat like patience on a monument, 
Smiling at grief. Was not this love indeed? 
We men may say more, swear more : but indeed 
Our shows are more than will ; for still we prove 
Much in our vows, but little in our love. 

[A troup of Clowns rush in, who dance about the 

Duke and Viola at the front center. 

All sing together] : 



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THE LOVER'S GARDEN 709 

[DuKB, YiojJL, and ClownsJ] 

Come away, come away, death. 

And in sad cypress let me be laid; 

Ply away, fly away, breath; 

I am slain by a fair cmel maid. 

Hy shroud of white, stuck all with yew, 

O, prepare it I 

Hy part of death, on one so true 

Did share it 

Not a flower, not a flower sweet. 

On my black coffin let there be strown; 

Not a friend, not a friend greet 

My poor corpse, where my bones shall be 

thrown: 

A thousand thousand sighs to save. 

Lay me, 0, where 

Sad true lover never find my grave. 

To weep there 1 

Duke. Let all the rest give place. 

[They retire to a position on the stage.] 
• •••••• 

*'As You LiKB It,'' Act II, So. V. 
{Enter to music: Orlando and Bosaldh), Cilia and 
OuvEB, Touchstone and Audbby, SiLynxs and 
Phoebe, and a chorus of Huntsmen.] 

SONO. 

Under the greenwood tree 

Who loves to lie with me, 

And tune his merry note 

Unto the sweet bird's throat. 

Gome hither, oome hither, come hither: 

Here shall he see 

No enemy 

But winter and rough weather. 



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710 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Who doth ambition shun, 

And loves to lie i' the son, 

Seeking the food he eats, 

And pleased with what he gets. 

Gome hither, come hither, come hither: 

Here shall he see 

No enemy 

But winter and rough weather. 

Act V, So. IL 

(During this seene Titania deeps upon Bottom's dumlder.) 

Phoebb. [To Bosaund.] 

Youth, you have done me much ungentleness. 
To show the letter that I writ to you. 

BosA. I care not if I have : it is my study 

To seem despiteful and ungentle to you : 
You are there followed hy a faithful shepherd; 
Look upon him, love him;r he worships you. 

Phoebb. Good shepherd, tell this youth what 'tis to 
love. 

SiLvius. It is to be all made of sighs and tears; 
And so am I for Phoebe. 

Phb. And I for Ganymede. 

Oblando. And I for Bosalind. 

Bos. And I for no woman. 

SiL. It is to be all made of faith and service 
And so am I for Phoebe. 

Phb. And I for Ganymede. 

Obl. And I for Bosalind. 

Bos. And I for no woman. 

SiL. It is to be all made of fantasy. 

All made of passion, and all made of wishes; 

All adoration, duty, and observance, 

All humbleness, all patience, and impatience. 

All purity, all trial, all observance; 

And so am I for Phoebe. 



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THE LOVER'S GARDEN 711 

PfiE. And so am I for Ganymede. 

Obl. And so am I for Bosalind. 

Bos. And so am I for no woman. 

Phe. If this be so, why blame you me to love yont 

Siii. If this be so, why blame you me to love yout 

Obl. If this be so, why blame you me to love you t 

Eos. Who do you speak to, ** Why blame you me to 
love youf 

Obl. To her that is not here, nor doth not hear. 

Eos. Pray you no more of this : 'tis like the howl- 
ing of Irish wolves against the moon. [To Sil.] 
I will help you, if I can : [To Phb.] I would 
love you, if I could. Tomorrow meet me all to- 
gether. [To Phb.] I will marry you, if ever I 
marry woman, and 1*11 be married tomorrow: 
[To Obl.] I will satisfy you, if ever I satisfied 
man, and you shall be married tomorrow. 
[To 8U.] 1 will content you, if what pleases 
you contents you, and you shall be married to- 
morrow. [To Obl.] As you love Bosalind, 
meet : [To Sil.] as you love Phoebe, meet : and 
as I love no woman, I'll meet. So, fare you 
well: I have left you commands. 

Sil. I'll not fail, if I Uve. 

Phb. Nor I. 

Obl. Nor I. 

[They take pktces.] 

Nor: If the lovers are omitted, here insert the danee mentioned 
in the directions at the end. 



"MiD-suMMBB Night's Dbbam.'' Act HE, So. I. 
[Music. Obbbon steals in, followed by Puck.] 

Obbbok. I wonder if Titania be awaked; 

[He approaches the throne.] 



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712 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

Act. IV, So. L 

Bnt first I will release the fairy qaeen. 

Be as thou wast wont to be; 
See as thon wast wont to see : 
Dian's bnd o'er Cupid's flower 
Hath such force and blessed power. 

Now, my Titania ; wake you, my sweet queen. 

TiTAKiA. [Waking.} My OberonI what visions 

have I seent 
[Oberok takes Tttakia. by the hand amd leads her 
forward. Bottom is led by PsASBBiiOSsoM, Cob- 
web, Moth and Mustabdseed.] 
Obbbon. Titania, music call; and strike more dead 

Than common sleep of all these five the sense. 
Titania. Music, hoi Music, e'er we take us henee!^ 

[AU come down in massed groups to the front for a 
final song.} 

SONO. 

*'As You Like It," Act V, So. IH 

It was a lover and his lass. 
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino, 
That o'er the green corn-field did pass. 
In the springtime, the only pretty ring time^ 
When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding: 
Sweet lovers love the spring. 

Between the acres of the rye, 
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino. 
These pretty country folks would lie. 
In springtime, etc., etc. 

* TiTe words interpolated here. 



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THE LOVER'S GARDEN 713 

This carol they began that hour, 
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino, 
How that life was but a flower 
In springtime, etc, etc 

And therefore take the present time, 
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino ; 
For love is crowned with the prime 
In springtime, etc, etc 



GENERAL DIB£CnON& 

The Lawr*9 Qarden maj be given out of doon, in ftn open spaee 
between trees, on a stage with an outdoor set, or even on a platform 
without seenerj, tiiongh this latter would lose mneh of beautj. A 
throne for Titaaia, arranged on a broad dais at center rear, large 
enoo^ for two, with tiie steps of the dais wide enough to permit some 
grouping upon them, eompletes the staging. It wiU be worth whils 
it a terrace effect can be arranged on either side near tiie dais, so that 
the performers will show to advantage when massed. This is not 
obli^Ktory. 

Aa the beauty of the whole must depend upon tiie plaeing of the 
various groups upon the stage, the director, in planning the disposi- 
tion of the divisions, muirft consider carefully color combinations in 
costumes, balance, poetic suitability, etc., etc. Thus at the finale will 
the stage present a well balanced mass of harmonious color. Open 
the ICasque with a clear stage. 

ICutie for the Masque shomd be chosen under the advice of experts 
IB both nrasie and dimcing. As there are many good settings of the 
aongs, and as tiie choice of music must necessarily be made with 
regard to the conditions under which the Masque is to be given; i. «., 
whether with orchestra, piano or other accompaniment, and whether 
an indoor or an outdoor production be planned, no absolute ehoiee of 
musie has here been attempted. 

Costumes should be modeled after the types customary in good 
Sbakespearean productions on the stage, care being taken that the 
color schemes are planned to make an harmonious whole. 

The Masque, as outlined, is large and requires many partidpanti. 
However, the material is so arran^ that each factor, as for instance 
the '^Daffodil Dance," or the eauerpt from ''Bomeo and Julieti*^ 



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714 THE LOVER'S GARDEN 

am be prepared tepanitelj bj a given eehool, the whole being p«i 
together only at the very end. If it be desired to give onlj part of 
the Maaqney it ia eaggeeted that the ezeerpts whieh bring in the 
lovera (that part set off with arrows) be omitted. In that caae a 
aeeond dance of the fairies, or a general flower dance most be inserted 
at this point to give Titania time to fall asleep on Bottom's shoulder. 

Again, if desired, anj one of the pairs of lovers maj be omitted, 
in order to shorten the work. The material win be foond to be 
easilj divisible for working purposes, and to adapt itself readilj to 
omissions. It is eamestlj advised that the children be allowed to 
leam all tiie lines in a part given to any one school, even thoagh in the 
aetoal reading at the time of production onlj a few take part; also 
that thej be allowed to help make their costumes and properties, and 
that the singing and dancing be given attention bj the whole sehooL 

The reason-f or-being of the ICasque is its possible value in vitallj 
interesting young people in the study of Shakespeare, and any school 
undertaking it should bring the work into contact with every possible 
department. 

All flowers mentioned in Shakespeare's text may be found tabu- 
lated in "Shakespeare Garden and Wayside Flowers,'' by W. Foxtoa, 
London, 1 Paternoster Square, E. C, 1914. Those wishing inf<»nia- 
tion regarding musical settings may apply to the office of the Drama 
League of America, 736 Marquette Building, Chicago. 

There is no performance royalty upon this Masque. It is free to the 
public 

Note: There has been a widespread and oft-repeated demand for a 
masque which shall bring forward the flowers which are mentioiied so 
often in the works of Shakespeare. The following masque is offered in 
a spirit of reverence for the great poet. It represents an effort to bring 
together such portions of his work as may be blended without too 
much violence. There occur in it two whole and three half lines 
which are not Shakespeare's. These seemed necessary in order to 
bind the whole together. Besides this, four lines have been given to 
Florisel which in the text belong to a shepherd, and Titania is allowed 
to repeat a line after Ceres. There are, also, a few transpositiona in 
tiie order of appearance. Otherwise the lines are exactly as they 
appear in the text of Shakespeare. These variations from the text 
will be found noted in the footnotes where they occur. 

To those who feel that any touch upon the work of the poet is a 
profanation, the author would submit the excuse that there seems a 
real demand for material of this kind in masque form, in order that 
school-children may take part in celebrating the Tercentenary. Any 
arrangement in such form naturally involves some adjustment. The 
effort here has been to change just as little as possible the letter and 
not at all the spirit of the master poet; and if this work can, in any 
measure, help children to take a more personal and vital interest ta 
Shakespeare, the author will feel justified. 

Alice C. D. Rasr. 



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THE PRINTED PLAY. 

The Dawn, by Emile Verhaeiien. The Introduction and 
the Translation by Arthur Symons. Small, Maynard 
and Company. New York, 1915. 

There is to be gleaned from this vers libre war 
drama a suggestion of Verhaeren's hope for the 
world. Briefly, the salvation of society means to 
him a complete readjustment of the present order 
on the basis of the essential brotherhood of man. 
The superimposed and artificial system growing out 
of conmaercialism and modem politics, resulting in 
such disgusting pictures of chaos as the modem city 
presents, must be abolished and a simpler and 
stouter framework set up. Verhaeren is in dead 
certainty as to the possibility of such a change. It 
will be a revolution, sudden but peaceful, with the 
probability of accidental bloodshed. It will emanate 
from the mass of conunon people and the leaders 
will be actuated by an undying faith ; they will feel 
the irresistible urge and they will suddenly press the 
button for a single, united thrust to their ideal 

This hope is given a war setting in The Daum, 
and the realization of it there is the simultaneous 
laying down of arms by both factions. The situa- 
tion is worked out in a series of etchings, poverty- 
stricken peasants in flight before the enemy, soldiery 
besieging and defending a town, haranguing mobs, 
and tiie humble home of the leader of the people. 
The home is that of Herenien, the preacher of Ver- 
haeren 's message. At first, we feel that the psy- 
chology of this farmer-intellectual is not correct be- 
cause of the apparent practical success of a thor- 

715 



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716 THE PRINTED PLAT 

oughly impractical man. His onworldliness is evi- 
denced by the passage : 

I am 80 nnshaken in my destiny that notiiing which is 
happening now seems to me real. I believe in surpriBe, 
chance, the unknown. 

This supreme confidence in his fulfilling his mission 
makes him reckless and he walks out with his little 
child, unarmed and unprotected, among the Be- 
gency's troops and is shot. That establi^es Here- 
nien's greatness for, as the author says, ^^ great con- 
quests need great victims." 

The play is the visionary work of a visionary man. 
It is an exposition and a forecast ; if it carries home, 
it is because we agree already. 

Master Olof, by August Strindberg. The Introduction and 
the Translation by Edwin Bjorkman. The American- 
Scandinavian Foundation. New York, 1915. 

Ghbistinb : You gave me an xmlucky gift, Olof, when you 
gave me freedom, for I dcm't know what to do with it. 
I must have some one to obey. 

Surely, this Strindberg of twenty-three is a dis- 
tinct anticipation of the Strindberg of fifty. These 
early indications of the poet's later position on 
woman suggest, and truly so, that one of the salient 
interests of Master Olof is a reading of it in the light 
of maturer works. This was the first of the author's 
important pieces and the idea of writing a drama 
based on Olaus Petri and the Swedish phase of the 
Lutheran Reformation had a two-fold source, ne- 
cessity and inspiration. By the death of Carl XV, 
the young dramatist, then in attendance at the Uni- 
versity of XJpsala by the kind financial support of 
that Mng, was thrown upon his own resources ; the 
play had already had its inception in Strindberg's 



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THE PRINTED PLAT 717 

mind, however; the period of religious reform was 
to serve its turn as a field for experiment in psycho- 
analysis. In this, is Master Olof of greatest sig- 
nificance as a finger-post to his later career. 

To go into detfiuly some of the faults of the drama 
are plainly portentous. Although historically ac- 
curate in main outline, the appalling lack of 15th 
century background, the contraction of the action 
by several years, anachronisms of fact, and the spirit 
of the dialogue lead to the obvious conclusion that 
ideas and not facts and people were concerning the 
writer. The aim, that is, the particular aim, is best 
stated by Strindberg Idmself some twelve years 
later; in substance, he says it is the embodiment of 
the contradictory phases of a single individual. 

Not the least of the charm of this interesting play 
is due to the enlightening introduction by Mr. Bjork- 
man. 

The State Forbids, by Sada Cowan. Mitchell Kenneriey. 
New York, 1915. 

Barharians, by Robert DeCamp Leland. The Poetry- 
Drama Company. Boston, 1915. Price 35 cents. 

The issue of the Sanger-Comstock controversy 
and the theme of War Brides are combined in a one- 
act play in two episodes. The State Forbids, by Sada 
Cowan. The disadvantages of the suppression of sex 
knowledge and of conscription are wreaked on one 
family so that the state forbids the mother to take 
the useless life of an imbecile child and to keep the 
life of a vigorous and helpful son. As generally ap- 
plicable, the conclusions regarding contrarconcep- 
tion and heredity, to be drawn from the first episode 
are not wholly accurate ; concerning conscription, we 
can sympathize with the mother but not agree with 
her. 



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718 THE PRINTED PLAY 

Begarding the ever present problem of fasing 
propaganda material with an effective technique. 
The State Forbids succeeds eminently better than 
Barbarians which is little more than speech-making. 
This obviously pro-German sketch answers the 
charge of militarism with a scorching condemnation 
of American dollar-worship. Mr. Leland has a point 
but it is put unconvincingly. 

Taps, by Franz Adam Beyerlein. Translated from the Qer- 
man by Charles Swickard, with a Publishers' Note. 
John W. Luce and Company. Boston, 1915. 

Some years ago, after a continued success abroad. 
Taps was produced in New York xmder the direction 
of the translator. An indifferent reception caused 
the termination of its run at the end of four weeks. 
What, with the obsessing interest in militarism now 
current in the country, would be its length of life if 
produced this season T There would at least be these 
two points in favor of it as a contribution to the 
^*crop of war plays*' (as the newspaper phrase 
goes) : that it is anti-militaristic from a Teuton's 
viewpoint, and that it pictures the evils of a war ma- 
chine in peace time. 

Interesting as its angle of attack is, a technical 
feature excites real admiration. It is an instance hi 
which the narrative furnishes an almost perfect ve- 
hicle for the propaganda. The problem of subordi- 
nating the story to the message is deftly overcome 
and each progresses hand in hand with the other. 
The result is that the reader is simultaneously con- 
scious of both and that he is the more convinced of 
the truth of the teaching. In the handling of char- 
acter, what we imagine to be the effect of Prussian 
system on human nature is corroborated by the 
secret recalcitrance of the under-officers. The ig- 



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THE PRINTED PLAT 719 

norance of the privates, the stupidity of Lieutenant 
von Lauffen when on his own initiative, and the fine 
humanity of the old sergeant, shackled in claiming 
his common rights by his social position, reveal tiie 
fact that the evils of an army are not confined to 
fighting. 

Jesus: A Passion Play, by Max Ehrmann. The Baker- 
Taylor Company. New York, 1915. 

The King of the Jews, by *'K. P." (The Grand Duke Con- 
stantme). The Translation by Victor B. Marsden. 
Funk-Wagnalls Company. New York and London, 
1914. 

So familiar a theme as the Passion makes it im- 
perative that any handling of it be especially power- 
ful. Whether either or both of these two plays defi- 
nitely ** arrive,'^ we must admit that the material in 
each instance is manipulated with noticeable feeling 
and skill. Though the narratives are mainly the 
same (Ehrmann begins a bit sooner — ^with the 
cleansing of the Temple), and the methods of treat- 
ing are totally different, the ultimate effects on 
the reader are identical. In Jesus, the central fig- 
ures of the tragedy enact the drama; the Son of 
Man and the disciples, the Eomans, converts of 
Jesus among the people, and the diversified elements 
of the vast horde inimical to the Christian's teach- 
ing are all marshalled with admirable cleverness. 
The King of the Jews, however, achieves its effect 
through fewer and secondary characters, Pilate, 
Procula, Mary Magdalene, Joseph of Arimathea and 
others present and comment upon the story. We 
hear the clamoring crowd tormenting Jesus on the 
way to the cross, but we see neither. Yet sympathy 
for the sufferer is just as keen as in the first play 
and the sense of imminent calamity is as all-per- 
vading. 



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720 TEE PRINTED PLAT 

Ehrmaim's Jesus, alone, has the semblanoe of an 
intellectual purpose. * * K. P. *s * ' idea is merely to pre- 
sent a glorification; the other aims to portray the 
Passion as a possible human experience, perfectly 
conformable to logic. The result is a simplicity 
about his whole play, an unexerted, quiet power 
about the character of Jesus, who is more the Sa- 
vior of Mark and Luke than of Matthew and John. 
Since the story is carried to its final end, the great 
stumbling block is, naturally in such a version, the 
resurrection. The interpretation herein rendered is 
that the Arimathean removes the body from the 
tomb to a place of safety before the mourners ar- 
rive on the morning after the crucifixion. The au- 
thor then proceeds to illustrate the rise of the tradi- 
tion of a physical resurrection by presenting Mary 
Magdalene, in a state of hysterical and imaginative 
adoration, as seeing Jesus walk from the sepulchre. 

Though The King of the Jews may have suffered 
in translation, we doubt if its original poetry is as 
exact in feeling as that of Ehrmann. One unusual 
characteristic it has, however; we rarely find in any 
other authors, with the exception of D'Annunzio 
and Shaw, such extraordinary interest in stage-set- 
tings. The scene descriptions prefacing eadi act, 
while lacking literary qualities, are in great detail 

The Sorrows of Belgium, by Leonid Andreyev. The Litro- 
duction and Translation by Herman Bernstein. The 
Maonillan Company. New York, 1915. Price $1.25. 

In the main, Andreyev's drama is a hurried piece 
of work. To be sure, it is an earnest tribute to a 
brave but helpless country; yet one feels that it is 
but the initial outburst of compassion showing little 
penetration and exactness as a literary work. The 
thinly veiled characterizations of Sang Albert and 



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THE PRINTED PLAY 721 

Maeterlinck represent the gennine interests of the 
play. 

King Albert, in the guise of Count Clairmont, is 
sketched from the human side ; the tragedy has shorn 
him of his regal robes and laid bare his real self: 

My dear man, I am nothing but a soldier now. Your 
hand, comrade 1 

A reluctance to take harsh measures is emphasized 
in his make-up and there is a hint as to his inability 
to make a decision in a crisis. This latter may be 
for dramatic purposes and to accentuate his subor- 
dination to Maeterlinck, to whom he puts a practical 
question of tactics: Shall the dams be broken! The 
King's complete comprehension of the poet as the 
savior of his country, even in a military sense, is the 
most striking aspect of Andreyev's conception of 
him. 

Emile Orelieu, the impersonator of Maeterlinck, 
accurately plays the part ascribed to him by Count 
Oairmont: 

We are the body, we are the hands, we are the head — 
niiile you, Orelieu, you are the conscience of our people. 

Thus Orelieu utters the significance of each incident; 
he damns militarism, proclaims the final hope of Bel- 
gium and, in the most fervent diction of the play, 
pays homage to the Belgian woman, silently and un- 
asked doing her duty : 

She has gone into the depths of her own self where all 
is silence and mystery. She is living through her mother- 
hood. . . . Sometimes she is suffering unbearably, 
she is terrified by the war — But she smiles . . and 
I see how there was awakened in her the prehistoric woman 
— ihe woman who handed her husband the fighting dub. 

Orelieu is more than the conscience of his homeland; 
the adoration of the people and the subservience of 



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722 THE PRINTED PLAY 

the nobility make him literally the master of the sit- 
uation. This, we cannot but feel, is merely an ex- 
travagant and dramatically unsuccessful expression 
of a fellow intellectual, but we cannot doubt its sin- 
cerity. 

Helen, by Edward Storer. Published by B. Storer, 12 
Harpur St., London, W. C, England. Price 6d. 

Helen is the third of the pamphlets in the "Loose 
Leaves Series** which are being published privately 
by the author in England. The Country Walk and 
the Case of the Modern Artist started the series and 
they comprise portions of Mr. Storer *s work whidi 
are ** denied the right of existence by the commer- 
cialism which controls the publication of every kind 
of literature. . . . Nowadays, a piece of writ- 
ing, of painting, of sculpture has to be judged a com- 
modity before it can be judged as a work of ari*' 
We feel that the writer must know whereof he 
speaks, but it is diflScult to see why Helen should not 
at least pay its publishing expenses. 

The drama is of the lyrical species dealing with 
the immediate events preliminary to the flight of 
Helen and Paris from the court of Spartan Mene- 
laus. Their adventure is interpreted as the natural 
union of two natures destined to meet and live and 
die together. Aphoristic sayings, dialogue with 
much fine imagery, suggestive inklings of deeper 
thoughts and the make-up of the two protagonists 
reveal in the author an altogether unusual writing 
and thinking abiUty. 

There is resultant from the reading of Helen a 
feeling that Mr. Storer has a message of deep sig- 
nificance which he is unable to express, leaving us 
only stray intimations inadequate even as reliable 
hints. Casual utterances of an anti-commercialistic 



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THE PRINTED PLAT 723 

natare against the existing social order, discussion 
of the antagonism of truth and custom, and of beauty 
in the abstract are the bases for such a conclusion. 

The Later Eiiglish Drama, edited with an Introduction 
and Notes by Calvin S. Brown. A. S. Barnes and 
Company. ' New York, 1898. 

This is a school edition of six familiar plays of 
the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, She Stoops 
to Conquer, The Rivals, The School for Scandal, The 
Lady of Lyons, Richelieu, and Baiowles' Virginius. 
Particularly usable are the introduction, which is 
a brief outUne of English drama from Shakespeare 
to about 1840, and the critical and biograjdiical 
bibliographies of the authors and plays. 

Christmas Plays for Children, by May Pemberton. Music 
and Illustrations by Rupert Godfrey Lee. Thomas Y. 
Crowell and Company. New York, 1915. 

Nursery days are recalled by Miss Pemberton 's 
book of three Christmas plays with interpolated mu- 
sic, Lost Toys, Mistletoe and Holly and Christmas in 
Rhymeland, The dialogue and music are exceed- 
ingly simple and the simplicity of the sets suggests 
the possibility of home production. 

The Lonely Way; Intermezzo; Countess Mizzle, by Arthur 
Schnitzler. The Introduction and the Translation by 
Edwin Bjorkman. The Modem Drama Series, 
Mitchell Kennerley. New York, 1915. Price $1.50. 

This, the eleventh publication of the Modem 
Drama Series (discussed in a previous issue of the 
Drama), brings to the English reading public three 
of Schnitzler 's best plays. What we have to expect 
of him, sparkling dialogue, character penetration, 
and a candid treatment of the free Viennese life, we 
fbid here combined with a sincere contemplation of 



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724 THE PRINTED PLAT 

life relations. The Londy^ Way, which Bjoik- 
man calls Sdmitzler's ablest' piece of work, posits 
the point of the common misunderstanding among 
people and the consequent solitude in which each of 
us lives. More poignantly is this felt after middle 
life; says Sala: 

The process of agmg must needs be a lonely one. 

Intermezzo, a comedy and the most obvious in struc- 
ture of the three, presents Amadeus Adams, an or- 
chestra conductor, and his wife, Mrs. Cecilia Adams- 
Ortenburg, two genuine achievements in character- 
drawing. Countess Mizzle discloses the belief that 
we are all of the same clay, prince and coachman, 
countess and ballet dancer. 

The Thief, by Henry Bernstein. The Introduction by Pro- 
fessor Richard Burt<Mi and the Translation by John 
Alan Houghton. The Drama League Series of Plays, 
Volume X; Doubleday, Page and Company. New 
York, 1915. 

Although the thought is obviously subordinated 
to a remarkable technique, it is so effectively 
projected by this technique that it justifies a state- 
ment The theme of The Thief is the lack of com- 
mon interests between husband and wife, their union 
resting ultimately upon the sex relation. Conse- 
quently, the wjfe's duty becomes the preservation of 
tills relation by whatever means possible, if not by 
natural beauty, by clothes. Thus, Marise, the wife, 
being somewhat less attractive than others of her 
set and having less wealth, is led to steal the money 
wherewith to buy enticing gowns and lingerie. 

Like The Truth and Jones' The Lie, this simple 
fable becomes dramatic material by reason of the 
telling of a falsehood. Marise denies the theft and 



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THE PRINTED PLAY 725 

fhe guilt is assiimed by Femand, the young son of 
a friendly family, becanse he idolizes her, being 
in that ** green-sickly condition called calf-love." 
The discovery of the stolen money by Marise's hus- 
band serves as the key to the catastrophe. This sit- 
uation with logical embellishments of character and 
secondary incident furnishes the material for a 
three-act play in which every moment is tense with 
eager interest. While, as might be expected, the 
personalities presented are not the complex char- 
acters of a Schnitzler, the very simplicity of their 
make-up clearly defines the elements of the dramatic 
conflict The picture of Marise, the victim of a love- 
Hf e and a world that is out of tune, is peculiarly ap- 
pealing and tender. 

Jane Clegg, by St. John Ervine. Henry Holt and Com- 
pany. New York, 1915. 

This English play by an Irish playwright is good 
reading. As is to be expected from the earlier works 
of Ervine, the plot is (Hstinctly subordinated to the 
character. The incidents in themselves are capable 
of much dramatic tensity, but the author's absorp- 
tion in the presentation of types smothers their pos- 
sibilities. 

The play is a genre picture, the story of a matri- 
monial separation and the events leading up to it, 
in the lower middle classes of England. The per- 
sons are realistically drawn, Mrs. Glegg, the motiier- 
in-law of Jane, being the most striking in her un- 
conscious humor, her satisfaction with remaining 
ignorant, and her disgust for anyone's breaking 
through life's conventions — ^which ^e calls '' acting 
unnatcherl." If Mr. Ervine meant to indulge in 
symbolism, Mrs. Glegg represents the incorrigible 
stupidity of her class, Jane, the forward looking ele- 



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726 THE PRINTED PLAT 

ihent, ignorant but aware of it, Henry, the weak- 
minded husband^ contented with marrying his intel- 
lectual equal and unhappy if he marries above it. A 
race^track bookie, an honest but selfish clerk, vividly 
drawn, and two children who are vitally real, com- 
plete the group which we cannot but feel is the work 
of an expert 

The British and American Drama of Today, by Barrett EL 
Clark. Henry Holt and Company. New York, 1915. 

When we who read plays for a living as well as 
for pleasure view the success of the two books of 
which this is the second, we feel a buoyant assur- 
ance that '^the people '' are asking if not demanding 
expert advice on the reading of drama in order that 
their pleasure may consist in more than the thrill 
of the narrative. To be sure, for the last few years 
there has been the certainty that inveterate readers 
have been including modem drama in their cate- 
gories of enjoyable literature, but there has been 
Uttle evidence that the persistent perusers of the 
short story and the novel are taking to the writings 
of the stage. Yet to such seems Mr. Clark's book 
best fitted to appeal; mayhap it was so designed. 
The simplicity of his suggestions for study and the 
obviousness of his questions regarding the helpful 
comparison of plays, etc., ^ve British and American 
Drama a distinct usefulness for novices at play- 
reading. 

To explain the content, the book is identical in 
form and method with its predecessor, The Continen- 
tal Drama of Today. Brief biographies of the most 
noteworthy English, Irish and American dramatists, 
complete bibliographies of their plays and critical 
material, together with outlines for the study of the 
more typical plays of each writer constitute tiie stuff 



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THE PRINTED PLAT 727 

of the volume. In view of the fact that this is a 
compilation of selected playwrights, the basis of se- 
lection offers itself (as it inevitably does) as a vul- 
nerable flank for destructive criticism; lest some one 
should attack at this point, we wish to plant our- 
selves squarely in favor of Mr. Clark's choice. 

Inasmuch as the American dramatists are just be- 
ginning to excite comment as a school, any printed 
consideration of them is interesting. The section 
devoted to the Americans in this book is peculiarly 
attractive because the compiler sets forth his own 
critical ideas, as he does not in the other portions, 
using there the comments of authority. Belations 
between the thought and the method of our play- 
wrights and the ground-currents of American life 
are interestingly suggested. 

Modem Drama and Opera; Volume II. Introduction, The 
Drama in America, by Archibald Henderson. The 
Useful Reference Series, The Boston Book Company. 
Boston, 1915. 

This is an enlargement and a supplementary con- 
tinuation of the first volume, which was an out- 
growth of work on bibliographical lists started and 
issued in various forms since 1907. In its present is- 
sue the compendium, f dr such it must be called, 
leaves little to be desired as far as it goes. Twenty- 
five of the most noted dramatists of Europe and 
America are given biographical sketches, their plays 
listed with a characterizing sentence and a critical 
bibliography on each, together with general critical 
material on their work. The lists include everything 
available except newspaper reviews and criticisms 
which are not counted as get-at-able in any but the 
largest cities. Further, there are bibliographies on 
2%e Modem Drama: Its Traits, Tendencies and 



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728 THE PRINTED PLAT 

Technique which take in drama in ednoation and the 
issne with the motion picture. Part 11, the opera 
sectiony comprises eight modem composers* 

It is di£Bicalt to express adequately the gratitude 
of the follower of the drama for this invaluf^le book. 
It is indispensable to the success of the cause that 
this mechanical work be done accurately and ex- 
haustively as it is in this volume. Not the least of 
the worth of the volume lies in the stimulating and 
f ar-visioned essay by Mr. Henderson. A. K K 



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OP THE NEW BOOEa 

From the Gardner Printing Company of Olere- 
land, comes the word that there is about to be is- 
sued El Capitan Veneno, a drama by Don Pedro A. 
de Alaroon, which is translated by Gray Casement. 

Huebsch announces Another Book on the Theatre, 
by (}eorge Jean Nathan, Percy Mackaye's The Im- 
migrants J a play called The Treasure, now ready, by 
David Pinski, the sixth volume of the Dramatic 
Works of Oerhart Hauptmann, and another one-act 
play by George Middleton, Criminals. 

little, Brown and Company have published a Me- 
morial Edition of Clyde Fitch's plays in four vol- 
umes. Plays never before put in print, personal 
data, etc., are included. 

The Four Seas Company announce Laodice amd 
Dtmae, by Cbrdon Bottomley and Judgment, by 
Amelia J. Burr. 

A Manual of Pageantry, by Robert Withington, is- 
sued by the ITniversity Extension Division of the 
University of Indiana, brings together information 
''to aid those who may undertake such work in the 
celebration of Indiana's Centennial in 1916.'' It is 
also of interest in view of the Shakespeare Tercen- 
tary. The author announces the impending publica- 
tion of a work on English Pageantry: An Historical 
Outlook. 

Mitchell Kennerley is publishing this Autumn 
Iphegenia in Tauris, a poetic drama by Witter Byn- 
ner, and The Twilight of the Oods, by Josephine 
Daskam Bacon. 

Searchlights, a war drama by Horace Annesley 

729 



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730 NEW BOOKS 

Vaohelly which was produced hy Mrs. Patrick Camp- 
bell in San Francisco this last summer, is now out 
in book form. (Geo. H. Doran and Company.) 

Doubleday, Page and Company announce for the 
fall The Masterpieces of Modern Drama, in two vol- 
umesy edited by John A. Pierce under the supervi- 
sion of Brander Matthews ; several new volumes in 
the Drama League Series of Plays: A Woman's 
Way, by Thompson Buchanan, with an introduction 
by Walter Pritchard Eaton; Paul Hyacinthe Loy- 
son's The Apostle, translated by Barrett Clark; The 
Trail of the Torch of Hervieu, translated by John 
Alan Houghton; Sardou's Patriot, translated and 
with an introduction by Barrett Clark, and now 
ready; My Lady's Dress, by Edward Enoblaudi; 
and A False Saint, by Francois de Curel, the trans- 
lation by Barrett Clark. 

The committee in charge of the Dramatic Museum 
of Columbia University is issuing in limited editions 
several series of documents dealing with the theory 
and the practice of the art of the theatre, reprints 
of inaccessible essays, trandations from foreign 
tongues, and original papers, all furnished with in- 
troductions and annotated. The second series was 
published in October and consisted of four papers on 
acting: The Illusion of the First Time in Acting, 
by Mr. William Gillette, with an introduction by 
George Arliss; Art and the Actor, Constant Coque- 
lin, translated by Abby L. Alger, the introduction by 
Henry James ; Mrs. Siddons as Lady Macbeth and 
Queen Katherine, by Mr. H. C. Fleeming Jenkm, 
with an introduction by Brander Matthews; and Re- 
flemons on Acting, by Talma, the introduction by Sir 
Henry Irving, and a review by Mr. H. C. F. Jenkin. 
The third series will be ready for issuance in the 
fall of 1916 and will be on playmaking. The papers 



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NEW BOOKS 731 

are: A Stage Play, by Sir WiUiam Schenk GUbert, 
the introdnction by William Archer; Discussions of 
the Drama, by Carlo Goldoni, selected, translated 
and introduced by Mr. H. C. Chatfield-Taylor; The- 
atrical Table4alk, by J. W. von Goethe, selected, 
translated and introduced by Mr. W. W. Laurence; 
and How Plays Are Written, by Abraham Dreyfus, 
translated by H. H. Hughes, the introduction by 
Brander Matthews. The number of copies in each 
series available to the public is only three hundred. 

One of the younger dramatists, Harold Brighouse, 
has a new play out. Gar side's Career, which has just 
been published by A. C. McClurg and Company. 

Louis Calvert, the actor, will shortly publish a 
series of letters written to him by Mr. Shaw during 
the period in which he was rehearsing G. B. S.^s 
plays in England. It seems to be the practice of the 
dramatist to write a letter to his leading actors after 
each rehearsal in criticism of their work. These 
epistles are described as being replete with the Irish- 
man's nimble wit. 

Bichard G. Badger announces additions to the 
Contemporary Dramatists Series which are out: 
Bchegaray's The Great Gaeloto; Advent, by Strind- 
berg; and Gorki's Submerged (Nachtasyl). 

The Passing of Mars: A Modern Morality Play, 
by Margaret Wilkinson, is published by the author 
at Coronado, California. 

The Dramas of Lord Byron: A Critical Study, 
from the pen of Samuel C. Chew, is brought out by 
the Johns Hopkins Press. 

Among the Autumn Announcements of the J. B. 
Lippincott Company are Maurice Sand's The His- 
tory of the Harlequinade; The Art of Ballet, by 
Mark E. Perugini ; and A Dictionary of the Drama, 
by W. Davenport Adams. This last is to be corn- 



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732 NEW BOOKS 

plete in two vohimes of six hundred pages eadi, iSkm 
first of which is now ready. 

Mas^eld's new play of Japanese history at the 
beginning of the ei^teenth centory. The Faithfyl, is 
annonnoed by Macmillan. The same firm is alas 
bringing ont Vachel Lindsay's The Art of the Jfov- 
ing Picture; a three-act drama, The Porcupine, hj 
Eidward Arlington Bobinson; The Life of If on, ik 
Andreyev, translated by G. J. Hogarth; and ShiAe- 
spear e^s Environment, by Mrs. C. C. Stopes. 

The contribntion to the season's drama of O. P. 
Pntnam's Sons consists of a set of Oscar Wilde's 
works, the Bavenna Edition, in thirteen volnmee. 

The Yale University Press will publish late in the 
fall an important play by Paul Clandel, The Hostage, 
translated by Mrs. Clara Bell, with an introdsctioa 
by Pierre Chavannes. 

The acting version of George V. Hobart's moral- 
ity. Experience, which was produced by William El- 
liott, is now available. (The H. K. Fly Company.) 

John Lane and Company announce Tragedies, by 
Arthur Symons, comprising The Harvesters and two 
one-act plays; and Stephen Phillips' Armageddon, 
'^a modem epic drama in a prologue, a series of 
scenes, and an epilogue written partly in verse and 
partly in prose." 

T^l^lliam lindsey's Red Wine of RousMon and a 
Bevised Edition (12 mo., 158 pages) of The Arrow- 
maker, by Mary Austin, are the new publications of 
Houghton, Mifflin Company. 

Next March, Messrs. Holt will bring out Bichard 
Burton's new book, the tentative title of which is 
Bernard Shaw: The Man and the Masque. Their 
present publications include Costumes and Scenerg 
for Amateurs and The Beau of Bath, And Oiher 
One- Act Plays, by Constance D'Aixgr Ma(&ay; 



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NEW BOOKS 733 

Christinas Candles, a book of ChriBtmas plays for 
boys and girls, by Elsie Hobart Carter ; and Writing 
and Selling a Play: Practical Suggestions for a Be- 
ginner, by Fanny Cannon. 

The book of the prize opera, Fairyland, by Brian 
Hooker; a new edition of Marlowe's Doctor Faustus; 
and Part I of Goethe's Faust, translated by John 
Anster, with an introduction by A. Wl Ward, and 
notes by C. B. Wheeler, are the fall contributions of 
tilie Oxford University Press. 

Galsworthy's new play, A Bit o^ Love, is from the 
honse of Charles Scribner's Sons. 



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RECENT MAGAZINE AETICLES ON THE 
DRAMA, 

SPECIAL ARTICLES: 

The Little Country Theatre; Current Opinion, August. 

The Popular Triumph of the New School of Scene Paint- 
ing; Current Opinion, August. 

Sacha Guitry: The Spoiled Child of the Parisian Public; 
Current Opinion, August. 

On Little Theatres ; Theatre, August 

The New Theatrical Poster, by Rozel Qotthola; Theatre, 
August. 

The Play Doctor, by Willis Steell; Theatre, August 

Pleasures and Palaces (II). (An account of the first for- 
est production of a play), by Princess Lazarovich- 
Hrebelianovitch ; Century, August. 

Drama Comes Back from the Movies; The New Republic, 
August 14th. 

Is Dramatic Criticism Necessary t by Brander Matthews; 
The Bookman, September. 

Imagined Drama, correspondence from Lincoln Colcord; 
The New Republic, September 11th. 

The Poetic Theme in the Modem Pageant, by Anne Throop 
Craig; The Forum, September. 

Stuart Walker's Portmanteau Theatre; Current Opinion, 
September. 

The Opening of the Dramatic Season ; Theatre, September. 

Miss Anglin in Greek Tragedy; Theatre, September. 

Perpetuating Charles Prohman's Work; Theatre, Sep- 
tember. 

The Art of Joseph Urban ; Theatre, September. 

Lou-Tellegen Talks of the Stage and of Bernhardt; Thea- 
tre, September. 

Edward Knoblauch : Dramatist of Dreams, by Grace Wil- 
lard; Theatre, September. 

The Woman in the Theatre, by Arthur Pollock; Harper's 
Weekly, September 4th. 

734 



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MAGAZINE ARTICLES 735 

Sequels to the Dollys House, by Kenneth MacGowan ; Har- 

I)er's Weekly, September 11th. 
The Actors Are Come Hither, My Lord, by Metcalfe ; Life, 

September 2nd. 
Hamlei with Hamlet Left Out, by Brander Matthews; Yale 

Review, October. 
The Charles Frohman Way, by (George Ade ; Cosmopolitan^ 

October. 
The Menace of the Movies; Theatre, October. 
Yvette Guilbert to Revisit America, by Edith Valerio; 

Theatre, October. 
The Dramatic Critic, by Alan Dale ; Theatre, October. 
A Moral from a Toy Theatre, by Brander Matthews ; Scrib- 

ner's, October. 
' Adophe Appia and Ctordon Craig, by Carl von Vechten ; 

The Forum, October. 
George Arliss: Portrayer of Stage Gentlemen; Vogue, Oc- 
tober. 
The Lure of Sumvrun: Reinhardt's Mimo-Drama; Vogue, 

October. 
Sensations a City ; Li Praise of the Ballet, by Arthur Sy* 

mons; Vogue, October. 
The Troublesome Last Act, by Clayton Hamilton; The 

Bookman, October. 
The Immoral Morality of the Movies; Current Opinion, 

October. 
Leon Bakst on the Revolutionary Aims of the Serge de 

Draghilev Ballet; Current Opinion, October. 

REVIEWS OF THE PRINTED PLAY AND BOOKS ON 
THE THEATRE : 

Sense and Nonsense About Bernard Shaw, by Archibald 
Henderson (review of McCabe's critique) ; The Dial, 
September 16th. 

Edwin Roessler's The Soliloquy in Oerman Drama; The 
Dial, September 16th. 

Belgium's Poet Laureate, by B. M. Woodbridge (Zweig's 
EmUe Verhaeren and Alma Strettell's selected and 
translated Poems of Emile Verhaeren); The Dial, Sep- 
tember 2nd. 

Russian Plays and Novels (The King of the Jews, The Sor- 
rows of Belgium and Suhm^rged); Review of Re- 
views, August. 



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736 MAGAZINE ARTICLES 

A Great Austrian Dramatist (Sehnitzler'a The Lonely Way, 

Intermezzo and Couniese Mkzie); Review of Beviews^ 

Angnst. 
Tales, Plays and Essays (Allen Upward 's Paradise Found) ; 

Review of Reviews, Angnst. 
Galsworthy's A Bit o' Love; The State Forbids, by Sada 

Cowan; The Nation, September 9th. 
Barrett Clark's translation of Le Mariage d'Olympe in the 

Angnst Drama; The New Republic, September llth. 
Recent Plays of War and Love, by Homer E. Woodbridge; 

The Dial, October 14th. 
A Scandinavian Historical Drama (Master Olof); The Dial, 

September 14th. 
Ironies (Schnitzler's three plays), by George Soule; The 

New Republic, October 16th. 
Three Plays by Schnitzler, by J. Ranken Towae; Mrs. W. 

E. Clifford's A Woman Alone: The Nation^ October 

7th. 

REVIEWS OP PRODUCTIONS: 

The Lie; Hearsts, August. 

The Passing Shows (Beady Money); Taller, August 18th. 

The Boomerang, reviewed by Norman Hi4>good; Harper's 

Weekly, August 28th. 
A FuU House; Hearst's, September. 
Young America; The Nation, September 2nd. 
Common Clay and Young America; Life, September 9th. 
The Road to Happiness; Common Clay; and The House 

of Qlase; The Nation, September 9th. 
Marie-OdUe; Current Opinion, September. 
Marie Tempest in Repertoire; Our Children; The Nation, 

September 16th. 
Common Clay; The New Republic, September 4t]L 
The Road to Happiness; The New Republic, September llth. 
Hit'the'TraO-HoUiday; The New Republic, September 25th. 
Husband and Wife; Moloch; Stolen Orders, and Two U 

Company; The Nation, September 30th. 
Marie Tempest in RoeaUnd; Harper's Weekly, Septembw 

25th. 
Pinero's The Big Drum, by William Archer; Grumpy; The 

Nation, September 23rd. 
The Boomerang; Current Opinion, October. 



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MAGAZINE ARTICLES 737 

The New York IdeaiFrimceu Pat; The Nati<m, October 

The New York Idea; Hip-Hip-Hooray; and Prineeis Pat; 

life, Ootobor UtL 
Da$ Weite Land; and The New York Idea; The New Be- 

C* 'ic, October 9th. 
dbox Theatre Serka of Inlays; and The Bargmn; 
The New Republic, October 16tb. 



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Henry Holt and Company s 



^^F WBirZHaAHDaBLLmaAFLAT: Pnettcal Bog. 

gwtioiiB for tlia B«giiin«r. BY FANNY CANNON. 
12mo. 321 pp. $1JS0 net. 

Perhmps tne clearest and nmpleet book on Writing a PI&j and 
the first to give any considerable attention to the difficult mmttar 
of Selling one. 

The author as actress, for years Vice-President of the Aetoia' 
Society of America, and critic of Play MS8. for "The Editor/' 
as stage director, playwright and ''play doctor," knows her aob- 
ject thoroly and gives remarkably clear snggestions to the bewil- 
dered beginner. 

H* OoataBto Indiidcs: 



Iffannf actoring a Play 

The Theatra 

The Author 

Thema and Story 

Phases of the Story 

The **OkMet** Drama 

Techniqua 

The Characters 

Tb» Actor, His XMreetor and 

His Audience (2 du^^ters) 
The Scenario 
WMtlng tha Play; IMalogiie and 

Action 



More About the Srenarta 

Form of Dialogue 

Idiosyncrasies of DIalogaa 

Dramatic Action 

Stage Directions 

Tha Mannscript 

Tha Aftermath 

Some Phases of Play-wrfttes 

Other Phases of Play-wzttlBC 

Ona-Act Plays 

The Commercial Aipaet 

And FlnaUy 



Analysis of The I^igger, by Edward Sheldon. 
Working scenario of The Second Mrs. Tanqneray* 



Form of dramatic agent's contract. 
Including list of pfitys, with references. 



Appendix A. 

Appendix B. 

Appendix C. 

Bibliography. 

Index. 

COSTUMES AND SCENEBT FOB AMATEUBS: A Practleal 
Working Handbook* BY CONSTANCE D'ABCY MACKAY. 
Fully Illustrated. 8vo. Probable price. $1.75 net. (Beady Nov. 13th.) 

Chapters on Amateurs and the New Stage Art, Costumes and 
Scenery. The numerous pictures include the principal costumea 
needed for adults and children; also for the folk play, the faixy 
play, the historical play (especially the American), and the roman- 
tic play. This is believed to be the first volume dealing with 
costumes for children. 

The designs for scenery will be made to scale, and can be so 
simply and easily constructed that any amateur can use theaiL 
Both painted and curtain scenery will be discussedLand the mate- 
rials and color scheme will be folly dealt with. The scenes will 
include indoor and outdoor sets, both mediaeval and modem. A 
scheme for an inexpensive outdoor Greek Theatre is also given. 
With each costume or scene will be notes showing how, by simple 
changes, one may be adopted to serve for half a dozen diiferent 
purposes. 

Mftf HOWTOPMK 



lion Toliune to the Mitaor^ i 
i FIATS, SUM Mt. 



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Latest Drama Boob ^n!. m 

HM T ia H ANB AMBBIOAK DBAICA OF TODAY— 
OntUnes for Its Study. BT BABBETT H. GLABK. 

BuggestionBy biographies and bibliographies for use in eonnecticn 
iprith 5ie important pla^ of Pinero, Jones, Wilde, Bhaw, Barl^er, 
Hankin, Chambers, Bavies, Galsworthy, Masefield, Houghton, Ben- 
nett, Phillips, Barrie, Teats, Boyle, Baker, Sowerby. Francis, Lady 
Gregory, Synge. Murray, Ervine, Howard, Heme, Tnomas, Gillette, 
Pitdi, Moody, Mackaye, Bheldon, Walters, Cohan, etc. 

In a few pages devoted to each play, Mr. Clark indicates in a 
way highly suggestive how the skilled dramatists construct their 
plays, plan their various dramatic effects, etc. The volume was 
planned to be used in connection with the reading of the plays 
themselyes, but it also makes a strong independent appeal. $1.60 
net. 

B — tm TiBiMMiiliit: ". . . Thoronrhly workmanlike and practloaL . . . 
Whoever hma Mr. clark'e book in hie hand will be provided with a valuable 
and compendiooB work glrlng a creat variety of Information about modem 
dramatlata and their playa ... It is well arranged, well proportioned, and 
admirably indicative of the course of American drama during the past thirty 
Fears. . . 

By the aama antbor: 

THE CONTINENTAL DBAHA OF TO-DAT— OutlinM for Its 

Stody. 2nd edition. $1.35 net. 

THREE MODEBN PLAYS FBOM THE FBENOH (Le Mattre's 

Tba Pardon, Lavedau's Princo D'Auree, and Donnay 's ThA Other 

Danger). Two of the plays translated by and all edited by 

Barrett H. Clark. $1JK) net. 
BEOENT PLAYS: 

St. John Ervine'a JANE CI200. 

His first play to be published in America. A new and refreshing 
treatment of "the triangle" in an humble home. ''The Manches- 
ter Guardian '' calls it '^'one of the beet of the modem plays." 
(80 cents net.) 

Oonstance D'Arcy Maekaye's BEAU OP BATH and Other Playt. 

Probably the author's finest work thus far. There is humor, 
pathos, and much pietnresqueness in these Eighteenth Century 
episodes, in which Beau Nash, Fanny Burney, Burke, Peg Wofiing- 
ton, Bomney and others figure. Illustrated from noted portraits. 
$1.20 net. 

George Middleton's POSSESSION and Other One Act Playi of 
American Idfe To-day. $1.35 net. 

TbBea* Book B^vlevr: "The plays act thenuelvee. . . . People llvins la 
the world ae we know it are Bhown to ue at some moment when the etrees 
of life brins* them into their eupreme dramatic crlaia ... It ehotild not be 
mleeed by readers looking for a striking presentation of the stuff that life 
is made of* 

The wh9W are hirt a few of HENBT HOI«T AND COICPANT'S DRAMA 
BOOKS, of which a special desciiptlTe ct^enlar wlU be sent on application 
to them at S4 W. tSrd St., New Tork, contatalnv des crlpU ons of works by 
.Bdward K. Halo, Clayton Hamilton, Archibald Henderson, etc.: a nnmber of 
books OB Shakeiipeare by ten Brink. Btopford Brooke, MaseOeld, etc; plays 
by Benlah M. DIxToeorffo MIddleton, Perdirai WUde, etc Other plm fir 
yonav folks by Blisses Constance D'Arcy Mackaye* Maude Morrison Frank. 
AUeo Johnstone Walker, etc 



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I THE LITTLE REVIEW I 

Literature Drama Music Art 

MARGARET C. ANDERSON 

BNTOK 

I q^HE LITTLE REVIEW is a mag- 
azine that believes in Life for 
Art's sake, in the Individual rather 
than in Incomplete people> in an age 
of Imagination rather than of Rea- 
sonableness; a magazine that believes 
in Ideas even if they are not Ulti- 
mate Conclusions, and values its 
Ideals so greatly as to live them; a 
magazine interested in Past, Present, 
and Future, but particularly in the 
New Hellenism; a magazine written 
for Intelligent people whb can Feel; 
whose philosophy is Applied An- 
archism, whose policy is a Will to 
Splendor of Life, and whose func- 
tion is — to express itself. 

834 FINE ARTS BUILDING ; CHICAGO I 

15 CENTS A OOPY $1^0 A T£AB 



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MMMCMMMM9M 



THE MOST SATISFACTORY SERIES OF PLAYS 

THUS FAR PLACED BEFORE THE 

AMERICAN READERS 

I THE MODERN DRAMA SERIES 



i I 



EDITED BY EDWIN BX>RKMAN 

N iU enliretx this series will include translations from 
every foreign language that has produced a contem- 
porary drama worthy of notice. It will also include 
English and American plays of exceptional significance. 
Each volume contains an introduction and a chrono- 
logical list of all plays written by its author. The 
format is uniform and attractive; the tjrpography ex- 
cellent. Elach volume is bound in cloth* with j^rices 
ranging according to the extent of the contents. The 
volumes already issued have received enthusiastic 
praise from readers and critics generally. 

ALREADY ISSUED: 

h 

Ln 
SO 

of 
d. 
11- 
SO 
). 
le 
is 
26 
). 

t 
1- 
(0 

,{: 

OO 
a- 
}0 
[• 

oo 



The 



Red Llfht 
tl.25 



VIIL 

(American), 
of Mars. 

IX. AeottldAmiMarerCRusaiaii). 

Savva; The Life of Man. 

Translated by Thomas Seltaer. 

$1.00 

X &ord mmsaay (ESngllsh), 
ytw% WUkjmt The Oods of the 
Mountain: The Golden Doom; 
King Arglmenes and the Un- 
known warrior; The Qlltter- 
Ins OaU; The LK>st Silk Hat. 
$1.25 

XI. Avthur gchnltrtsr (Austri- 
an), The Lonely Way; Inter- 
lude: Countess Mlssle. Trans- 
lated by Edwin Bj5rkman. 

$1.60 

XII. Sdlth mis (AmeHcan). 
Mary Jane's Pa. $1.00 

X^I. X » « r i o • D-ossay 
(French), Lovers; The Free 
Woman; They. Translated by 
Barrett H. Clark $1.50 



OTHER VOLUMES IN PREPARATION. SEND 
POSTCARD REMJEST FOR CLASSIFIED DESCRIP- 
TIVE CATALOGUE (WITH PORTRAITS) OF 
PLAYS AND BOOKS RELATING TO THE DRAMA 

KtcheO Kennerley ^ PnbKsliers, New Yoifc 



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For Teachers of English 

Remarkable strides are being made in all parts of the Unlt«4 
States In reforming the work in Bngliah. The principal exponent 
•f the new movement is 

The English Journal 

This is edited by James Fleming Hosic and a group of asso- 
ciates in the National Council of Teachers of English. It appears 
monthly, except in July and August, and always contains a 
variety of articles, communications, items of news, digests of 
other periodicals, book notices, and editorials. 

Note the range of titles in the following, which are soon t« 
be published: Our Rhetoric Slave, The Use of Pictures in Teach- 
ing English Literature, The God of Punctuation, A New Text- 
book in English. The Production of Plays in High School, Amer- 
ican Speech, Grammar in the High School. The Zlck Zack, Teach- 
ing Verslflcatlon. Methods in Oral Exposition. In Praise of Pre- 
vision. 

School men say that teachers who read the English Journal 
are almost Invariably enterprising, hopeful, and efficient. Thers 
ought not to be any other kind. 

Send $2.50 for an annual subscription or 80 cents for a slngls 
copy. 

Address: THE ENGLISH JOURNAL 
68th St ft Stewart Ave. Chicago, minois I 



THE POET'S TRANSLATION SEBIES 

The object of the editors of this series is to present a aumber 
of translations in Greek and Latin poetry and prose, especially of 
those authors who are less frequently given in English. The trans- 
lators will take no concern with notes, glosses or any of the ap- 
paratus with which learning smothers beauty; where the text is 
confused, they will give the most characteristic version, and where 
obscure, they will interpret. 
The pamphlets are: 

<X) T 

In 

Pi 
<t> A 



<8> 
<4> 



ft 
Ci 

A 

ti 

<«) y 
ti 



All the pamphlets— except the first — will be twelve pages long 
and will cost ten cents, post free. The series of six, fif^ cent^ 
post free. The pamphlets will be issued monthly. 

To be obtained from: The Egoist, Oakley House, Bloomsbiuy 
Street, W. C, or from Bichard Aldington, 7 Christ Church Place, 
Hampstead, N. W. 



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^Et j'ai voulu la paix 



P O E M E S 

Par ANDR]fi SPIRE 

Author of '^ersets.'* "^ert let Roates Absorde!*'* fta 

A little book of unpublished poems vfritten just before 
and during the war. M. Sjnre has been in Nancy* 
within a few kilometres of the firing-line, since 
August, 1914. 

THE EGOIST, in publishing these poems hy as wdl 
known an author as M. Spire, hopes to rnch that 
fairly numerous public in England in^iich reads 
French, and hopes also to follow up this book with 
other small collections of new French poetry by the 
younger poets. 

Copies may be obtained horn THE EGOIST, or from 
RICHARD ALDINGTON, 

7 Cbristdmrch Plsce^ Hampstead, N« W. 

Price 6d net Postage Id 

EDITION LIMITED TO 750 COPIES 

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READ THE MISCELLANY 

An mastntfld QUARTERLY for 
CouKtecnn of tiw Book-Bentiliil 

Occasional Book Reviews and Articles 

on Prints, Etchings and Fine 

Engraving 

THE OFFICXAL JOURNAL OF 
THE AMERICAN BOOKPLATE SOCIETY 



$1.00 a Year 



25 Cents a Copy 



AddNM 

EDITOR, THE MISCELLANY 
1010 Euclid Avenue Cleveland, Ohio 



THE DRAMA 

A Quarterly Review of Dramatic Literature 

May, 1916 



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THE DRAMA 

A Quarterly Review of Dramatic literatme 
Editor, THEODORE BALLOU HINCKLEY 



Ad^ory and Coatributing Editors 

THOMAS H. DICKINSON, University of Wisconsin. 

NATHANIEL W. STEPHENSON, CoUege o£ Chaiks- 
ton. 

GEORGE P. BAKES, Harvard University. 

RICHARD BURTON, University of Minnesota. 

STARK YOUNG, University of Texas. 

S. H. CLARK, University of Chicaga 

BENEDICT PAPOT, Chautauqua Institution. 

PuMisIxdby 

The Drama League of America 

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Copyright, 1914^ by Dimma Leacne of America 

BnteriA as second-class matter February 25, 1911, at the postcffioeat 
Chlcacro, Illinois, under the Act of March 8, 1879. 



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THE DRAMA 

Number 22 MAY 1916 

CONTENTS 

EEMY DE GOUKMONT, by Richard Alding- 
ton 167 

THEODAT 185 

A Play by Remy de Gourmont. 

THE OLD KING 207 

A Play by Remy de Gourmont. 

THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY, by Charles 
Lemmi 232 

THE STOET OP THE HULL HOUSE PLAT- 
ERS, by Laura Damty Pelham 249 

COMMON SENSE AND PLAYWRITING, a 
review by Howard J. Savage 263 

THE CINEMATOGEAPH AS AET, by Alex- 
ander Bakshy 267 

THE UNCHASTENED WOMAN, a review by 
Annie Nathan Meyer 285 

ON THE HIGHWAY, a Dramatic Sketch, by 
Anton Chekhov 294 

EECENT MAGAZINE AETICLES ON THE 
DEAMA 323 



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|NNE WHITNEY, the sculptor of this 
figure of Shakespeare, was bom in 
Watertown, Mass., in 1821, and died in 
1915, aged ninety-three. She was the 
youngest of her family, and kept her 
youthful vitality to an extraordinary 
age ; at eighty she had the physique of 
a woman of sixly, and no one who saw her in her 
nineties will ever forget her brilliant dark eyes, her 
abundant white hair, her strong, delicately-cut fea- 
tures, and the vivacity of her bearing. She was in 
her early years the friend and comrade of those men 
and women who were fighting the battles of suffrage 
and of anti-slavery, Maria Qiapman, Wendell PhU- 
lips, William Lloyd Garrison, and others. She was 
devoted to the religious and philosophical ideas of 
Emerson, as were so many eager minds of that 
period, and her first expression of herself was 
through i>oetry; her poems, collected and published 
in 1859, were privately reprinted in 1906. Clay she 
did not touch until she was in middle life, and she 
seems to have worked out her own methods with 
little help from teachers ; she studied under no great 
master. She went to Bome to work, and later had a 
studio near Paris for a brief period ; but much of her 
work was done in her own studio in Belmont, Mass., 
after her return to America. Among her produc- 
tions are the bust of Keats at Hampstead, England ; 
the statue of Samuel Adams in the Capitol at Wash- 
ington, a replica of which is in Adams Square, Bos- 
ton; the figure of the Norse sea-rover, Leif Ericson, 
which stands near the head of Commonwealth Ave- 

165 



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166 ANNE WHITNEY 

nne, Boston, shading his eyes and looking west; and 
the seated Sumner in front of the Harvard Law 
School at Cambridge. Her statue of Harriet Mar- 
tineau at Wellesley College was destroyed by fire 
with the College Hall in 1914, but WeUesley still pos- 
sesses a small bronze of Boma by Miss Whitney. 
Chicago has only the bust of Frances Willard in the 
Art Institute. 

In this figure of Shakespeare, Miss Whitney in- 
tended to reveal the dramatist with A Midsummer 
Night's Dream in his thoughts; the outline of Bot- 
tom wearing his ass's ears is scratched on the base 
of the fountain against which Shakespeare leans; 
and she herself said, in Shakespearean phrase, to a 
group of friends, as she pointed to the half -mocking, 
half -meditative mouth of the poet, ^^What fools 
these mortals be I'' 

The figure is about three feet high. Since Miss 
Whitney's death it has been in the keeping of Miss 
Yida Dutton Scudder of Wellesley, Mass., to whose 
kindness we owe the privilege of publishing this 
reproduction. 

The reproductions here exhibited will appear also 
in the organ of the Eleanor Association. 



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THE DRAMA 

A Quarterly Review of Dramatic Literature 



No. 22 



May 



1916 



EEMY DE GOUBMONT 




EMT DE GOURMONT will never be a 
popular author — ^it was the last thing 
in the world he wanted to be— not even 
with the finer sort of popularity which 
men like Robert Browning and Gustavo 
Flaubert have achieved. Browning and 
Flaubert are typical of the really great 
author whose work, at first sneered 
at or ignored, is recognized by all later and less 
prejudiced generations as being of supreme beauty. 
Gourmont very much despised the facile popularity 
of the mob author; he was too modest to presume 
that he would occupy the position of arbiter to 
future generations; he wrote for himself and his 
friends, for an elite which was the finest of its time. 
He was undoubtedly a great master, but he is 
largely read and appreciated by other authors and 
artists, not by the generality of mankind. He re- 
flects the influences of his epoch; he did not create 
one. Like Browning and flaubert he was at first 
misunderstood, is still misunderstood, was slow to 
win appreciation, yet did win it from very many 
critics of distinction. His name stands for fine work, 
for a fine standard of literature; he is known to men 

167 



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168 REMY DE GOURMONT 

of letters the world over; but he is not one of the 
great creators. His work is critical not cxreative; 
even in his poems, novels and plays — ^not the most 
considerable part of his work — ^the spirit is largely 
critical. 

Miss Lowell, in her clever essay* on Bemy de 
Gonrmonty hints that she feels his versatility to be 
the chief cause of his comparative inferiority — an 
inferiority which places him just below the great 
creators, though vastly above the horde of imitators. 
1 think she is right : as a poet, Bemy de Gourmont 
beautifully carried out theories which were cnrrent 
in his time; he did not create like Bimband or 
Laforgue, or Mallanne; as a ^^cerebral'' novelist he 
has not Huysmans' rasping verve and exasperated 
precision of epithet ; as a sceptic philosopher, he has 
Anatole France for rival; as a naturalist, as a writer 
on sex, he has Fabre and Havelock Ellis before him; 
as a dramatist, he owes a deal to Maeterlinck; even 
as a prose stylist one hesitates to place him above 
Henri de B6gnier; only as a critic of literature, as 
an exponent of aesthetic scholarship is he really un- 
rivalled — ^the two Livres des Mctsques, the five vol- 
imies of the Promenades Litteraires and Le Latm 
Mystiqt^e are marvels of critical insight He defined 
and defended Symbolism as no other writer has done 
or could have doncf 

All these great names which I have been quoting 
are of men who were his contemporaries, and whose 
diverse talents are, as it were, synthesised in the 
work of one man of their period — ^Bemy de Gour- 
mont That is what I am trying to get at — ^he is 

*eHz French Poet% hj Amy Lowell (Marmillaii, 1915). 

tHSs esaaj on Maeterlineky pnUisbed in Thx Dbama for liaj, 
1915, is Bui&eient example of de Gonrmont's brilliant eritieal abiU- 
tiee. Although written many years ago^ it remains one of the beii 
studies of Maeterlinck's personality. 



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REMT DE GOURMONT 169 

the synthesis of a great period of intellectual activity 
(1885-1914), inferior perhaps to some of his contem- 
poraries in their own particular sphere, but superior 
to them all in the width of his interests and in the 
diversity of his accomplishments. If he was not su- 
preme in any one branch of literary creation, there 
exists none in which he has not achieved fine, some- 
times magnificent, work. 

Subtlety, complexity — ^an over-subtlety which leads 
him to paradox, to espouse always the ** other side'* 
of a question (against the majority), to prefer an 
original half-truth to an accepted truism, to abandon 
the normal for the curious; a complexity which is 
sometimes impossible to disentangle, a complexity 
which he sometimes resented himself — ^these are the 
two salient characteristics of Bemy de Gourmont. 
To expose all the threads of this multiform per- 
sonality is perhaps impossible; to gain an adequate 
notion of his mind from reading one or two of his 
works is indeed impossible; and to present him pri- 
marily as a dramatist would be false. His four 
dramas, LUith, Theodat, PhSnissa, and Le Vieux Roi, 
are merely part of the output of an immensely active 
intelligence, constantly preoccupied with reflection 
and imaginings, but too restless, too complex, to con- 
centrate a life-work on any one subject or branch of 
literature. 

n 

Bemy de Gourmont was bom on the 4th of April, 
1858, in the Chateau de la Motte at Bazoches-en- 
Houle (Ome) ; he died* in his apartment in Paris 
on September 27, 1915, a last flicker of his eyelids 

*See ta France for September 30, and October 2, 1915, for an 
account of hia death and the foneral speeches. 



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170 REMT DE GOURMONT 

telling those by Ms bed-side that he had heard and 
nnderstood the news that the lYeneh had taken 20,- 
000 prisoners in their attack in Champagne. So 
mndi desired that news of victory by the ex-dhiam- 
pion of sceptical anti-patriotism I * 

I do not propose to enter very far into the private 
life of Monsieur de Oonrmont, for there is always 
something indelicate in these indiscreet probings 
into other people's affairs, and, at present, there is 
not mndi to recount.! M. Jean de Gourmont is, I 
believe, writing a life of his distingnished brother, 
and that, when it appears, will tell ns as much or as 
Httle as he thinks fit. For present purposes I am 
making use of the short biognq3hical essay of 
Messieurs Van Sever and L^utaud-t 

During the war of 1870-1871 Eemy de Oourmont, 
then a boy of twelve, was initiated into the dharms 
of Moliere by an old cure who took diarge of his 
education when all the schools were shut The same 
cure taught him Latin. Bemy de €k)urmont mentions 
these lit^e facts in one of his essays, and it is char- 
acteristic of him that he should remember the war 
partly because he learnt to appreciate literature dur- 
ing its progress. It is not unlikely, thou^ that his 
subsequent attitude towards life, towards literature 
and towards international politira, was influenced by 
unrecounted experiences during that war. 

* See the article. Le Joui<m Patriotimne, Mercttre de France (April, 
1891). 80 reasonable in tone that one cannot nnderatand the foss it 
canaeo. It haa been reoentlj naed yerj unjustly against de Gaunnont 

t An article hj M. Matiiwe in a recent number of the (kukbrid^ 
Magatme contains an interesting personal sketch of Bemj de Oou^ 
mont. 

t See PoHes d'Aujaurd'hwi: Ad. van Berer ft P. Ltentand (Paris, 
Meronre de France, 21st ed. 1910). This collection contains many of 
M. de Gourmont 's best poems. It is indispensable to anyone who 
wishes to study modem French poetry. 

To aToid further footnotes I will cite two other books: FtiifSrence$, 
by Paul Escoube (Mercure de France), and Kem/jf de Qamwuml, by 
P. de Querlon (Sansot 1903). Both should be consulted. 



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REMT DE GOURMONT 171 

In 1883 he entered the Biblioth^ne Nationale, 
where he remained nntil 1891, laying the foundation 
of that immense scholarship — ^in the best sense of 
the word — ^which he afterwards put to such excellent 
use. During these first years at the Biblioth^ue he 
produced three or four books of no great merit, 
among them his first novel, Merlette, which does not 
rank among his best productions. In December, 
1889, appeared the first number of the (subsequently) 
great review, Le Mercure de France, of which Bemy 
de Gourmont was a founder and possibly chief con- 
tributor. His real career as a writer begins then. 

To appreciate this review's importance and to 
make clear the position of Bemy de (lourmont in 
modem literature it will be as well if I give a slight, 
though necessarily imperfect account of the develop- 
ments of French literature at the time. 

Before the Symbolistes the two schools of French 
literature were, in poetry, the Pamassiens, and in 
prose, the Naturalistes. That is not perhaps strictly 
accurate because some of the Pamassiens were very 
fine prose writers (I need mention only Anatole 
France) and some of the Naturalistes wrote poetry: 
but it will serve. Symbolisme, which appeared at 
the time of a great revolution, is really only a devel- 
opment of the two earlier sdiools. The Symbolistes 
reproadied the Pamassiens for their frigidity and 
the Naturalistes for their boring * * verisme, ' ' but they 
(the Symbolistes) were indebted to the Pamassiens 
for their romantic tradition and love of beauty and 
to the Naturalistes for their technique and hatred of 
modem civilization. (It must also be remembered 
that French poetry till the late eighties and even 
afterwards was donunated by the ** figure'* of Victor 
Hugo, much as English poetry of the time was domi- 
nated by Tennyson.) 



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172 REMT DE GOURMONT 

The NatnralisteSy being widely-read novelists, nat- 
urally made more noise than the Pamassien poets, 
BanvUle, HSredia, Leconte de Lisle and their entour- 
age. The NaturaiisteSy headed by 2iola, did sncoeed 
eventually in making a great stir in the world — 
though Mr. George Moore is no doubt right when he 
says that Zola was merely a prodigious journalist re- 
writing Flaubert. At any rate from about 1872 to 1885 
the Naturalistes were the vital influence in French 
literature and Zola gathered about him many of the 
most talented young men of the time. Yet the most 
powerful influences today are the ** outsiders/' Ver- 
laine, Bimbaud, Mallarme I 

Among Zola's *' young men" one of the most 
talented was Joris Karl Huysmans. After writing 
one or two extra Naturaliste works, such as En 
Menage, Les Soeurs Vatard, and Sac au Dos (all very 
fine), Huysmans threw off the bondage of ** realism" 
and in 1884 produced that curious book, A Rebours. 
It was something of a blow to 2iola. It had eventu- 
ally a very great influence on the young writers and 
on de Gourmont in particular. 

All this of course went on rather behind the scenes, 
so to speak; the big reviews and papers began to 
take Naturalisme seriously when it had done its best 
work ; Mr. George Moore came back to England and 
announced its advent when it was all over; Heaven 
knows when it really struck America. In 1886 a 
young man named Baju founded a periodical whidi 
he called Le Decadent, whose editorials might have 
been written by the perfect decadent himself, Des 
Esseints, the hero of Huysmans' A Rebours. In this 
amusing little rag some of the finest poets of the 
late nineteenth century appeared; to mention only 
a few: Mallarme, Verlaine, Laurent Tailhade, Jules 
Laforgne, and among prose writers Villiers de L'De 



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REMT DE GOURMONT 173 

Adam, Barbey d'Anrevilly and Hnysmans himself. 
It is rather odd to reflect tiiat the prejudices against 
these writers, whom we now know to be very consid- 
erable artists, should have forced them to contribute 
to a puerile little journal like Baju's Decadent. 

The new school of writers, chiistened **Les Deca- 
dents*' by their opponents, began to found periodi- 
cals of their own. Many of them died early deaths, 
but one, Le Mercure de France (founded 1889), has 
lived and prospered and brings us closely in touch 
with the subject of this article — ^Remy de (lourmont, 
at that time greatly under the influence of Hnys- 
mans, Mallarme and Verlaine. 

It may, perhaps, be not out of place here to insist 
on the importance of the young reviews in the study 
of recent Frendi literature. They are the best, most 
accurate, and most charming guides to the develop- 
ment, changes and accomplishments of the literature 
of the period. Practically every writer of talent first 
appears in their pages ; they were the first to print 
many works now famous, then despised; and many 
excellent morsels of literary craf tmanship lie buried 
in their pages. No public library and few individuals 
possess these faded periodicals, but Eemy de Gour- 
mont preserved very many, and several times in his 
literary essays he insists on their importance.* 

In Ms essay on the Mercure de France,^ which 
everyone ought to read, Eemy de Gourmont relates 
how the Mercure evolved out of two earlier periodi- 
cals : La Pleiade, which published Maeterlinck's first 
story (1886) and Scapin, whose editor was M. Alfred 
Valette, now for twenty-five years editor of Le 
Mercure de France. Certain young French writers, 

* See Les Jevnes Bevueg; preface by Bemj de Qotirmont and de 
CkMirmont's easajs on The Symbolistes. 

f Promenades lAn&raires, Eseajr Le Mercure de France, 1912. 



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174 REMT DE GOURMONT 

enthusiastic for the new imaginative art, though far 
from considering themselves Symbolistes, deter- 
mined to found a magazine^ Among them were Bemy 
de Gonrmonty Lonis Dmnnr, Jules Benard (author 
of PoU de Garotte) f and of course, Alfred Valette; 
closely associated with them were Madame Bachilde, 
the novelist, and Laurent Tailhade. Other writers 
joined them later. Of these founders the most fa- 
mous today is Eemy de (lourmont For over twenty 
years hardly a number of the Mercure de France 
appeared without a contribution from him. In the 
essay mentioned above, M. de €k)urmont attributes 
the success of the Mercure first to M. Valette 's bril- 
liant editorship and then to the marvellous ballades 
of Laurent Tailhade, to Eenard^s little plays and 
afterwards to Pierre Louys' Aphrodite; but those 
who know the Mercure well will feel that this is Bemy 
de Gourmont^s modesty, for he was certainly the 
greatest pillar of the review. There must have 
been many people who bought it just for the sake 
of his contributions. 

I cannot afford more space for this sketch of the 
development of modem French literature, but I 
would like to add this: classification of authors by 
^^ schools" is as idiotic as most classification, and as 
dulL Bomantics, Pamassiens, Naturalistes and 
Symbolistes — ^just as Futuristes, Unanimistes and 
Imagists of today — are merely convenient terms for 
designating the collective effort of certain artists 
towards the attainment and establishment of a cer- 
tain ideal of their art. While this effort is going on 
the artists are hidden in a cloud of combat, calumny 
and misunderstanding. The sins of one imbecile are 
visited upon the heads of ten men of talent. It is 
only when the fracas is calmed down that the real 
personalities emerge; the hangers-on are forgotten; 



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REMT DE GOURMONT 175 

and the^gentdneness of the real artists is manifest. 
Who remembers now that Victor Hugo was called 
every sort of idiot and liar^ and said to be incapable, 
and a perverter of youth in his early days! No one. 
We scarcely think of him in connection with the ex- 
cesses of the Romantic movement. So it is with the 
Symbolistes; and just as we can see now that the 
Bomantic movement was a development and not a 
revolution, so Symbolistes, Pamassiens and Natu- 
ralistes of the seventies, eighties and nineties are 
all inter-related and so far from being inimical to 
each other, it is now impossible to determine where 
one ends and another begins. 

m 

That is, as nearly as a foreigner can hope to 
render it, my impression of Eemy de Gourmont^s lit- 
erary milieu; you will have to wait until Mr. F. S. 
Flint writes his book on modem French poetry for 
the whole complicated situation to be unraveled. I 
am willing to confess that I am a little overwhelmed 
by the mass of * * documents ' ' and the bulk of talented 
work of this period which one ought to study. 

I shall try to give an idea of Bemy de €K>urmont's 
work, by citing not the titles and contents of his 
forty odd volumes, but characteristic passages from 
his work at different periods. I want to show how 
his mind and art developed from the rather flowery 
beauties of early Symbolism to the clear thinking 
and clear writing of his mature period. 

Imagine Bemy de Gourmont about the year 1890. 
He is just over thirty, learned from his studies ; he 
has forgotten his early attempts at writing — ^his 
Che& les Lapons and similar books — ^has read and 
digested A Rehours, knows Huysmans personally, 
and is writing Le Latin Mystique, one of his most 



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176 REM7 DE GOURMONT 

interesting woi^. He is young and enthnsiastic. 
He has just brought out Sixtine, dedicated to another 
of his admirations, Villiers, a book which has obvious 
debts to A Rebours, but which shows a very distinct 
originality in the author. Already his character as 
a writer and his future development are sketched — 
his philosophical scepticism, his irony — ^his beloved 
irony I — ^his ** cerebral'* sensuality, his academic joy 
over church ceremonies and more than academic ad- 
miration of church literature, and his keen analytic 
power, for the moment rather overlaid with the fan- 
tasy and purple diction of the early Symbolistes. His 
Litanies, the prose tales, and the little play. Phi- 
nissa, now collected in Le Pelerin du Silence were all 
written and produced between 1891 and 1896. The 
Litanies de la Rose have been several times quoted 
recently. They show a close study of mediaeval Latin 
s^uaires, an admiration for Mallarme, and a j9orid 
beauty of diction very rare in French literature : 

**Rose verte, rose couleur de mer, nombril des 
sir^nes, rose verte, genmie ondoyante et fabuleuse, 
tu n^es plus que de Feau des qu'un doigt t'a toudiee, 
fleur hypocrite, fleur du silence.*' 

There are many beautiful strophes in these 
Litanies, in the Fleurs de Jadis and the Dit des 
Arhres. The Saintes du Paradis is a sequence of 
short poems on female saints and is distinctly more 
austere than the Litames. Compare these earlier 
poems with the Saintes of \nth the fine sonnet Le 
Soir dans un Musee; the increase of mastery is de- 
cisive. 

**Bergere nee en Lorraine, 

Jeanne qui avec garde les moutons en robe de futaine, 

Et qui avec pleure aux miseres du peuple de France, 



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REMT DE GOURMONT 177 

!Et qxd aveo conduit le Boi h Reims parmi les lances, 
Jeanne qui etiez on arc, une croiz, nn glaive, nn coeur, 

nne lance, 
Jeanne que les gens aimaient comme leur pere et lenr 

m^re, 
Jeanne blessee et prise, mise au cachot par les 

Anglais, 
Jeanne br^e h Bouen par les Anglais, 
Jeanne qui ressemblez k nn ange en colore, 
Jeanne d^Arc, mettez beanconp de colere dans nos 

ooenrs. 

That is written by the man to whom many people 
still deny the title of poet and who was accused by 
imbeciles of not loving his coxmtry I There are other 
and nobler ways of loving one's country than brand- 
ishing an abstract sword in the colunms of news- 
papers — ^Bemy de (}ourmont was too humane and 
too educated to like war, but he did sincerely love 
France. 

To continue the discussion of his work, take the 
first sentence of Le Pelerm du Silence (1892) and 
compare it with a sentence in any of his later works, 
say the essay, Une Religion d^Art from La Culture 
des Idies (1900). The first runs: 

'*Le blond troupeau bourdonne autour du fier sul- 
tan, du sultan aux comes d^argent: c^est Tauris, 
Courtis^ de plus de coUines que Tamour n^amene 
d^amoureuses, que la peur ne presse de peureuses 
aux flancs du male flamboyant.'' 

The second runs : 

**A une 6poque ou presque toute la sensibility, 
presque toute la f oi, presque tout ?amour se sont 
r^ugies dans Fart, et ou, par surcroit, ce mot, jadis 



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17fi REMT DE GOURMONT 

myst^rienx et pur, se tronve oompromis en pins d'nne 
aventure, il nous manqnait, evidemment, a oote de la 
religion de Fart, la religion d'art/' 

If anyone donbts that the second is better and 
snbtler prose than the first let him translate them 
bothy trying to obtain a precisely similar effect in 
English. The first, in spite of its assonances and in- 
ternal rhymes, is ten times easier to write. 

One more remark — qnite malapropos; any pub- 
lisher who would bring out a good English transla- 
tion of the PromefMdes Litteraires would be doing 
a service to international letters, to the education 
of the Anglo-Saxon world, and would put before 
everyone *s eyes some of the finest models of <aiti- 
cism of the last century. The Anglo-Saxon loves to 
* * criticise. * ' That is, to show his superiority by find- 
ing fault with people inmiensely superior to himself; 
it would be very good for him to absorb the fact that 
five volumes of appreciative critidsm have heea 
written by so fine an artist, so delicate a connoisseur, 
so uncompromising a craftsman, as Bemy de (}our- 
mont. 

IV 

Bemy de €k)urmont wrote four plays, Theadai 
(1888), LUUh (1891-2), Phenissa (1893) and Le 
Vieux Roi (1897). 

It would be incorrect to represent de Gourmont 
as a man exclusively or even very deeply preoccu- 
pied with drama. But it is also clear that a mind 
so curious of everything would be certain to experi- 
ment in dramatic form. That he wrote four plays 
proves that his dramatic work was something more 
than an experiment. He is essentially a literary 
dramatist, by which I mean that he considered the 
drama primarily and perhaps wholly as a form of 



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REMY DE GOURMONT 179 

literature and not as an art in itself , as modem 
critics quite properly insist that it is. One of his 
plays, LUith, is quite unplayable and was never in- 
tended to be played. Theodat was played in Paris 
many years ago, but I cannot find that the other two 
plays were ever produced. So you will see tiiat as 
a dramatist, as indeed in abnost everything, Bemy 
de (}ourmont was rather caviar to the general 

Theodat, the earliest of his plays, is in some ways 
the best, and is remarkable for the comparative ma- 
turity it shows. Since Theodat is printed here my 
comments are unnecessary, except perhaps in one 
or two points. The tragedy turns about a somewhat 
out-of-tiie-ordinary situation, placed in a century 
(the sixth) which has not been at all over-run by the 
average novelist and dramatist. In the sixth century 
the question of the celibacy of the clergy was stiU 
a very thorny one in the Western Empire. Popes 
and Coxmcils had enacted different ordinances on 
the subject and great confusion prevailed. Appar- 
ently — ^I say apparently for I have no particular 
knowledge of early church history — clerks were al- 
lowed to marry at this time but not bishops, and if 
a clerk became a bishop it was not xmcommon, if he 
were married, for him to repudiate his wife in order 
to show his piety. At least that is the situation as 
I gather it from Remy de Gourmont^s play. It is 
quite certain that he would not have written it unless 
he had discovered full justification for it in ancient 
chronicles and church histories. The whole thing 
is one of those bizarre and curious situations which 
de €k)urmont loved above everything. (The mixture 
of churchly asceticism and of sensuality is so char- 
acteristic of him that someone has described him as 
a cross between a satjnr and a Benedictine monk.) 
His love of the church, its literature, traditions, and 



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180 REMT DE GOURMONT 

ceremonies was, at any rate partially, derived from 
Ms friend, Huysmans, and sex as a motive was one 
of the strongest features of the Naturalistes. 

Bemy de (Jourmont probably did not believe any- 
thing; he was interested in everything, and he saw 
in the church and in church history a source of litera- 
ture which had been greatly neglected. It is incor- 
rect to represent Eemy de Gourmont as wilfully 
trampling on sacred things; he had more respect 
for the church than some of its members. But he was 
an artist primarily and when he wished to work 
out some situation he did not hesitate to use Chris- 
tianity for his background and to use it just as it 
pleased him. The sins of the flesh, he says in Le 
Matin Mystique, have been inveighed against by 
moralists. Christian and non-Christian, in all ages 
and times ; you must not blame me if they are often 
referred to in these pages. That is his apology and 
I think a just one. It may not be conventional good 
morals to show a Catholic bishop seduced from his 
vow of celibacy by a woman and that woman his own 
wife (which one would think sufficient excuse), but 
it is human nature. The contest between the spir- 
itual man and the natural or animal man, is as old as 
the intellect; in Theodat Bemy de Gourmont gives 
a rather special example and gives it well. The play 
has obvious defects, the chief being the over-dura- 
tion of the first incident, the too literary talk on 
heresies and the too **8ymbolicaP' enumeration of 
the properties of the holy vestments. On the other 
hand the woman's temptation of Theodat is a great 
deal more human and subtle than, for example, the 
rather trivial ** temptations, '^ of Salome in Oscar 
Wilde's play, or even in Flaubert's tale, for that 
matter. Maximienne is a more or less vital and 
credible person, for Bemy de Gourmont really did 



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REMY DE GOURMONT 181 

know something, even so early as this, of feminine 
psychology, and later in life his wisdom and toler- 
ance in these matters made one of the amiable sides 
of his character. 

LUith is simply the Bible story of Adam and Eve 
retold in dramatic form with great literary skiU 
after a study of mystic or nncanonical works like 
the Kabbala, the Talmud, and the Apocrypha. It 
might be briefly described as a medisBval mystery re- 
written and commented on by a sensual sceptic. It 
is important to admirers of Bemy de Gourmont as 
a turning point in his literary development It 
marked a considerable advance in his art, but is most 
certainly not meat for babes or jeunes fUles — ^those 
chains on free literature whose influence has been 
analyzed by de Gourmont in one of the most de- 
liciously ironical of his essays. 

La Princesse Phenissa and Le Vieux Roi fall natu- 
rally into another category. There is nothing of the 
church about them; they show a more developed, 
more philosophical mind and a greater mastery of 
literary technique. They are examples of Sym- 
bolisme at its best, and Maeterlinck would not have 
been ashamed to own them. In each there is a defi- 
nite philosophical idea worked out originally and 
skillfully. The Princesse Phenissa would be effective, 
though rather harrowing, if played. It is simply a 
symbolical working out of the tragedy of youth sac- 
rificed to the selfishness of age. A queen has a lover 
and a beautiful, yoxmg, selfless daughter. The queen 
makes her lover marry her daughter, the princess. 
Phenissa then grows jealous, wants her lover back^ 
and persuades him to murder his wife, for if he does^ 
by some mysterious manner he will gain for himself,, 
now growing old, the years which would have been 
hers and her child's. The poor princess and her un- 



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182 REMT DE GOURMONT 

bom child are murdered — ^it is the past mordering 
the future ; it is a symbol of what Europe is todaj. 
People talk about the selfishness of youth; but the 
selfishness of the aged is infinitely more horrible and 
more destructive. Bemy de (}ourmont's Phenissa 
does show under all its pomp and stiff brocades of 
Symbolisme this eternal struggle. When he wrote 
it I do not think he was conscious of its full signifi- 
cance, but it has certainly a bitter and obvious in- 
terpretation today. 

The latest of his plays, Le Vieux Roi, was written 
nearly ten years after the first. He had had plenty 
of time to increase his knowledge of life and diarac- 
ter. Here, as always, he is attracted by the strange 
and the abnormal All through the play are veiled 
or direct references to curious passions ; he does not 
hesitate to reveal thoughts and desires whidi are 
most often neglected or shunned by authors. In Le 
Vieux Roi, which I have translated for The Dbama, 
many people will doubtless see a likeness to King 
Lear, and in a sense de Gourmont has re-written 
Shakespeare's play from a modem standpoint. It 
is like the modem Russian novel of ** futility"; no 
one gets what he wants : the Old King dies by acci- 
dent, Yoland is killed by Gautier, Guislaine kills her- 
self from grief, Floraine loses Yoland, Gautier be- 
comes king but does not get Floraine, and Germaine 
loses her sister, Guislaine, the person she loved most 
on earth. It is a sombre little tragedy, with some 
very beautiful writing in it. 



In introducing these plays to English-speaking 
readers — ^they have never before been translated — ^I 
feel justified in claiming attention for them first on 
account of their very real merit and secondly be- 



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REMT DE GOURMONT 183 

cause they are part, and only a small part, of the 
work of a master in literature. The work of Bemy 
de Gourmont must be studied in its bulk before his 
real importance emerges. He belonged to a genera- 
tion which is disappearing, whose influence in litera- 
ture is declining, but that clear, sceptical, ironic mind 
can never lose its charm, never lose its real value. 
The men who direct the political destinies of Europe 
are xmeducated and unintelligent besides a man of 
Ms capacity, and it is a melancholy reflection that 
our age could make so slight a practical use of so 
magnificent a brain. In one of his little essays Bemy 
de Gourmont says that if all men thought as he 
the world would be so quiet that even in Paris one 
would be able to hear ^e hum of flies; if all men 
had thought as Bemy de (Gourmont there would have 
been no European war. 

BlOHABD AliDIKaTON. 



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THEODAT* 

A Play in One Act, translated from the Frendi of 
Bemy de Gburmont by Richard Aldington. 



The People of the Play. 

Theodat, Bishop of Clermont 

Mabhal. 

Paulinus. 

Flavien. 

TlBUBTTUS. 

Vai^bbius. 

Ordained Clerks. 

Mazimienne. 

The Porter of the Basilica. 

The year 570 of Onr Lord, at Clermont in the 
Arvernes, in the episcopal palace, which is a depend- 
ence of the Basilica. 

(Theodat was represented at the Theatre Modeme 
— ^under the anspices of the Theatre d'Art, on the 
11th of December, 1891, nnder the direction of M. 
Paul Fort; the part of Theodat was taken by M. 
Lngne-Poe and that of Maximienne by Mile. Camee; 
the decorations and costumes were designed by M. 
Maurice Devis.) 

* AH riglitt of reproduction on the stage or in book-form aro 
reserved by the translator on behalf of the heirs of the Ute Benqr de 
Oourmont. 



184 



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THEODAT 

By Bemy db Goubmont. 
Authorized Translation by Bichard Aldington. 

A large haU tvUh Roman embrasures, narrow, high 
and deep. The wails are covered with arras and 
the ceiling with painted cloth: on the dark yellow 
arras red lions dart out their tongues like flames 
and the blue of the painted cloth is sowed with gold 
stars, like the heavens, and with gold crosses, like 
Paradise. 

All round the walls is a bench covered with purple 
drapery and cut in four places: by the bronze bed 
which slopes from the head to the foot — the bed 
is large with a single pillow and over it hangs a 
lamp of red clay; by the high chimney lighted unth 
enormous beech logs and resinous pine-trunks; by 
the painted chest on which scenes from the Gospels 
are drawn in bright colours; by an orga/n built into 
the wall facing the chimney. 

The tUes of the floor are octagonal in shape. In front 
of the bed there is a four-legged stool with a step 
to kneel on and in front of the fire a small bench 
with a back. 

The Bishop is dressed in a green episcopal robe, half- 
hidden by the white gold-bordered dalmatic. He 
is kneeling with his head in his hands, resting upon 
the stool. 

The Clerks, in their white tunics, are also praying 
and kneel in front of the circular bench. 

The day is ending: Pa/ulinus, at a sign from the 
Bishop, lights the clay lamp, for it is not good that 
men in company should remain in darkness; but the 

185 



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186 THEODAT 

hearth lights the great haU more than the UtUe 
lamp; at its large and momentary flickerings, the 
lions waver, the stars glimmer, the gold crosses of 
the ceiling radiate. 
There is silence except for the spluttering of the wick 
in the heech-oU, the mutter of the fire, the low mur- 
mur of the slow praying voices, the suppressed 
sighs from hearts smitten hy anguish. 
Thsodat. Ah 1 1 am troubled by this anniversary. 
I cannot pray. O God, help me ! 

His forehead rests on the stool and a deep sigh 
comes from his mouth. Theodat is forty years old, 
tall, well-built, firmly muscled, swarthy, with a Ro- 
man profile; his eyes, blue like a GauVs, slightly hid- 
den, reveal themselves in sudden flashes; his dose- 
shaven hair looks like a black skuU-cap. He looks 
bom to be the commander of a cohort rather than 
the commander of a legion of souls, but the ecclesias- 
tical life has suppressed his nature, softened his 
gestures, given moderation to his movements. He 
was chosen bishop for the great rank of his family, 
for his theological knowledge, fdr his general kkuUi' 
ness which pleased the common people, for the frank- 
ness of his speech and the uprightness of his spirit. 
Thbodat. [Lifting his head and murmuring to 
himself.] Why is it that I cannot prayt "When 
PradentinSy ninth successor of Austremoine, conse- 
crated me before his death, I gave into his holy 
hands my joys, all the joys of this world, all my joys, 
and now like returned exiles they beat at my door. 
I had sworn, and on the day of my enthroning my 
house was closed to her whom God had given me for 
wife when I was only a clerk of the Lord. Day for 
day, that was a year ago, on the Feast of Saint 
Etienne, the first martyr of Christ; and from that 
day I have never weakened, but now I feel my heart 



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THEODAT 187 

escaping me and going, like a dog that has lost its 
master, to howl over the absent man's traces. Where 
is she now? What has happened to the houseless 
wife, to the living man's widow! If I could but see 
her, just a look, just for the time in which to say an 
**Our Father'' to drive away temptation I **The 
Bishop shall not receive his wife into his house." 
But outside the house. The Bishop has no wife; he 
belongs to all; if he be married, ^^let his wife be as a 
sister unto him." That cannot be. The grace of 
God even could not overcome so continuous a temp- 
tation. To expose oneself to it would be a perpetual 
sin. She has gone ; it had to be. Ah God I if I were 
only a simple priest or a humble clerk again, an eter- 
nal postulant, a chaste Christian I What have I said? 
Lord, pardon me. Have pity upon me, Lord. 

[Louder.] Martial, go to the organ. We will sing 
the Kyrie Eleison, that God may take pity upon the 
sinner, your Bishop. 

They sing the Kyrie Eleison. Thbodat leaves the 
stool and kneels on the tUed floor with his head upon 
the ground. 

Theodat. [Raising himself.] I confess to Al- 
mighty God that I have sinned in thought, word and 
deed---0 my sins, my sins, my very great sins I 

As he speaks these last words in a deep voice, the 
Bishop str^es his breast three times. 

The Clebks. [Striking their breasts.] my 
sins, my sins, my very great sins I 

Thbodat. Ahnighty God have mercy upon us and 
forgive us our sins and lead us to eternal life I 

The Cusbks. Amen. 

Theodat. Almighty and Most -merciful €k)d, 
grant us indulgence, absolution and remission of our 
sins. 

The Cusbks. Amen. 



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188 THEODAT 

[The Bishop rises from his knees and stands beside 
the snuM bench near the fire.] 

Theodat. Come, my children, and listen to me. 
[The derhs assemble before him.] 

I have still many admonishments to make to yon 
who will soon be my vicars. Ton know what duties 
the Church imposes upon those who assume the 
priesthood: I speak of the strict duties, the pri- 
mordial duties of every priest called to direct an 
assembly of the faithful Martial, what are those 
duties f 

Mabtial. Residence, Prayer, Preaching, the Ad- 
ministration of the Sacraments, the Correction of 
Morals. 

Thbodat. That is correct ; you know the letter of 
the law, but remember and let you all remember to 
keep it graven upon your hearts, upon your heads 
and upon your limbs. Love, believe, act Be cease- 
lessly in the midst of your flo(^ like true shepherds. 
Pray the Most High to deliver them from temptation. 
Announce the good news to them continually with 
xmtiring voice. Fortify their human weakness with 
the balm of the Sacraments. Watch, lest any Iamb 
stray from the fold. 

Watch over yourselves also my children. You are 
young; and the misfortunes of the time oblige me 
to consecrate you at the earliest age permitted by 
the canons: the pastures lack shepherds, or rather 
apostles — for what barbarism still remains! what 
paganism hidden under the foliage of Christian prac- 
tices, like a serpent! what sacrilegious adorations! 
what dark and devilish superstitions ! But the Lord 
will gird your loins : you will be strong against the 
flesh ; you will be strong against the mind. 

Fear the mind above all; fear pride which eats 
the sword of faith like rust. My children, be priests ; 



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THEODAT 189 

1>e not theologians. Of what service are vain dis- 
cussions, if you desire to follow in all things the 
ruling of the Councils f If you depart from them, 
you fall into the depths of infinite perdition. Watch, 
l>ut beware lest the dawn find you meditating on the 
Honade and on the Trinity. Remember Arius. Be- 
lieve that the Three are One, the One, Three. The 
Son had no beginning; at the price of your blood 
say not : * * the Word was created. ' ' 

Mabtial. What blasphemy I 

Flavien. [In a low voice.] The Son is co-eternal 
with the Father. . . • The Son is co-eternal with 
the Father. 

Theodat. Yes, repeat that and speak it aloud: 
consubstantial and co-eternal: the Council of Nicea 
has declared it. 

Flavibn. [In a much lower voice.] Consubstan- 
tial, yes ; but co-eternal f Is it possible f 

Thbodat. Avoid the heresy of ApoUinarius, that 
the Word, that is to say, the Divinity, suffered, died 
and was resurrected. 

Pauunus. It is absurd to say that. 

Thbodat. Believe and do not believe. Judge not. 
Beware lest in revolting against Apollinarius, you 
see two personages in Christ. 

MabtiaIj. Father, would that bo denying the Trin- 
ity! 

Thbodat. One single (Jod and three persons ; but 
distinguish persons and natures. Do not say with 
Eutyches : The human nature of Christ was absorbed 
by the divine nature like a drop of water by the sea. 
No, Christ was man and Christ was God: His body 
was not a vain appearance, an illusionary smoke: 
Man, he suffered in the human soul, in the human 
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190 THEODAT 

TiBUBTTOS. For how could God have suffered f 
Entyches agrees with ApoUinarins. . . . 

Thsodat. Heresies are all related, being all 
daughters of lies. 

VAiiBRius. Father, help me in my difficulty : sorely 
the sufferings of Christ greatly surpassed all human 
sufferings f 

Theodat. The Ood gave the Man strength to suf- 
fer more than man. You are subtle, Valerius. Take 
care, and do you all, my children, take care — since 
you are above the faithful through your priesthood— 
lest you come to believe yourselves above then* 
through your knowledge and holiness. Never ask 
yourselves questions like those Valerius asks, if yon 
have not the answer ready. And as for sanctity, re- 
member that you have sinned as clerks and wUl sin 
as priests. Do not imagine, like Pelagius, that any 
man, whoever he may be, can live without sin. Do 
not question — as he and Coelestius do— original sin 
which has forever stained us: your strength is in 
your consciousness of your impurity. What should 
we be without grace I May the grace of God be upon 
us! 

The Clerks. May the grace of God be upon usl 

Theodat. May it drive evil thoughts from your 
hearts! Listen to me. You, Tiburtius, and you, 
Flavien, are married. Govern your wives that your 
wives may not govern you. May they not be for you 
the occasion for sin but rather an armour against 
temptation and a buckler against carnal desires, the 
cup wherein you quench your thirst, not the amphora 
overflowing with drunkenness. Paulinus, have you 
sufficient strength to remain celibate? You know 
that once you have passed the grill of the Sanctuary, 
marriage is forbidden you forever I 

Pauunus. I hate womankind I 



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THEODAT 191 

Thbodat. Do not speak thus: I am afraid for 
you. Today you hate woman — ^but tomorrow? To- 
morrow, like so many others — alas 1 alas ! — ^you will 
take a concubine. Remember that if the laws of the 
Church are indulgent to the feeble — ah! so feeble — 
flesh, God is terrible to those who sin beyond 
measure. 

Paumnus. Neither wife nor concubine; and if I 
were married, father, I would do as you have done — 
I would shut my door upon my wife. Let the priest 
at least give an example and live alone with Ood. 

Theodat. Eustathius I Have you listened to Eus- 
tathiusf The rigid heretic whose rigour is only 
pride — ^has Eustathius disciples among us? No, it 
is not necessary to salvation that the Christians 
leave their wives, abandon earthly goods, pray night 
and day and fast every morning. The Christian life 
is not tiie monastic life. 

PAUiJinjs. Yet renunciation is so beautiful. Ton 
yourself are an example. 

Theodat. Keep moderation in all things. And 
you, my Martial, adopted and well-beloved son of 
Prudentius? 

Mabtial. Father, I have not thought about these 
things. I will follow . . . 

Paumnus. [To himself.] Adopted or natural 
son? How the Church has degenerated I 

Mabtial. I wiU follow the straight way, with 
God's aid. I know no woman, save Priscilla, my 
mother, and I would love no one save Christ. 

Theodat. May your heart never have need of 
speaking to anyone save Christ only. Pray. 

Mabtial. I will pray, father. 

Theodat. And you, Valerius, will soon be mar- 
ried, I know. 



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192 THEODAT 

VAiiBBiuB. I have left my promised bride; I have 
left her for God. 

Theodat. But shet 

Vaubbius. She has not miderstood my sacrifice. 

Thbodat. Marry and wait a year. She loves yon 
and I feel that yon love her also. 

Valerius. It is so good to hate her • • • 

Thbodat. And yon wonld be a priest! Beflect 
Let there be no scandal She whom yon abandon 
as a promised bride, may be desired by you when 
she is a woman and yon will not be able to take her 
save as yonr concnbine. Ah I Valerins, have yon 
the heart to degrade to that rank the noble girl who 
has vowed her life to yonf I know how long snch 
partings last and I know what they cost Marry 
and return to me ; I will welcome yon, for you will 
be sheltered from sin. Go, my son; you are no 
longer a postulant to the priesthood. Ton weep, 
but how happy she will be. My sons, I wish to spare 
you the struggles I have suffered. God has helped 
me and I am saved, but at what a price! Fear 
women, ah, fear women I 

Paxtunus. The fear of women is the beginning 
of wisdouL 

Thsodat. Or rather the complement, Paulinns. 
But how delicate these matters are I Experience in 
life is difficult to acquire, more difficult to teach oth- 
ers. You would have to strip yourself naked ; you 
have to scandalise the present to edify the future. 
God, protect my flock as you have protected me. 

The CiiEBKs. Bless us, father. 

[They are about to kneel down; the Bishop has 
half lifted his arm — the door opens and the Porter 
of the Basilica enters with a torch in his handJ] 

PoBTEB. Father, a woman asks to see you. 

Thbodat. There is a place for women to see me, 



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THEODAT 193 

the confessional: a time, the third hour. [And to 
himself he says with trembling and with joy:] If 
it were she ! 

PoBTEB. Father, it is an old woman. [And with 
a trembling and with joy the Bishop says within 
himself:] It is not she I 

Thsodat. How old is she, do you think! [And 
with sadness and with remorse he says within him- 
self:] Yet grief may have aged her. I am forty 
and my hair turns grey. 

PoBTEB. Father, she is three score and ten, as I 
judged by the light of my torch. 

Paumnus. In that case — I 

[The clerks and even Martial and even the old 
Porter break into covert smiles which vanish before 
the Bishop* s stern gaze.] 

Theodat. The young follow the old. — Betum 
and ask her what she needs, whether it be alms or 
food or raiment. Let her receive what is due to 
one of Christ *s poor little ones; or rather return 
and tell me and I will carry it to her myself. 

PoBTBB. [Going.] I will ask her, father. 

Theodat. Give alms with your own hands. The 
poor are the perpetual messengers of Christ, your 
Father. Kneel down, my sons. 

[The clerks kneel down and the sacred words fall 
upon their bowed heads — the sacred words which 
the arms of the pontiff, tracing multiple crosses in 
the air, seem to sow, to sow like a powerful sower 
upon each conscience.] 

Theodat. The blessings of Almighty God, of the 
Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost be 
upon you that you may be blessed, my very dear 
sons. Amen. 

The Clebks. Amen. 



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194 THEODAT 

Thbodat. Now go and may the peace of the Lord 
be upon yon. 

The Clebks. And with yon, father. 

[When the last clerk has passed the door ike 
Porter re-enters, with his torch stiU in his hand.] 

PoBTBB. She asks for no ahns, father. She is a 
great sinner — she trembles — she supplicates — she 
says that the Bishop alone . . . What sacrilege, 
father I She speaks of the burden crushing her dd 
shoulders • • • 

Thbodat. You are trembling yourself I Let her 
come in I The sins of my flodk are my sins. Let 
her come in. do you and ask her. [The Porter goes 
out and returns in a moment with the old woman^ 
who has sinned. During these moments Thbodat 
murmurs to himself:] Lord, I thank you that it 
was not she. The temptation would have been be- 
yond my strength. You have spared me. 

[Humhle, hent over her stick, an old woman comes 
in. Her rain-doak, like a round cope, enwraps her 
in heavy folds of grey stuff. The hood, like a 
monk's, entirely hides her face. She throws herself 
on her knees and kisses, first one, then the other, the 
Bishop's feet] 

Theodat. Arise, woman, and speak. 

[The stick renuiins on the tiles; the rags faU, and 
before Theodat — who recoils — rises Maximienne, in 
the whiteness of her linen robe, a Roman statue, 
pagan beauty in the house of Ood.] 

Maximiekke. It is L 

[The Bishop's cheeks are pale; there is angtUsh 
in his look; he goes step by step to the back of the 
hall. Maaimienne slowly follows him, then stops, 
and they rem^n silent, a few seconds, facing ead^ 
other.] 

Theodat. Devil, are you come to tempt met 



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THEODAT 195 

Maximiekne. I hoped so. 

Thbodat. Do not think that I will fall to your 
"wiles. 

Maximienne. Wiles I Oh I After aU, I am your 
wife I 

Theodat. Yon are no longer my wife. 

Maximiekke. And it is yon, the Bishop, who say 
that I **Whom God has joined together let no man 
pnt asnnder.*' 

Theodat. Whom God has joined, God has un- 
joined. 

Maximienne. I am your wife. 

Theodat. [With violent irony, the expression of a 
love rending itself.] My sister, I love yon, my sister. 

Maximienke. [In a voice where anger is mingled 
with supplication.] Be silent; ah, be silent! 

Theodat. [Suddenly calm.] ** To the Bishop his 
wife shall be as his sister.** The Councils have 
spoken; I know you no longer. 

Maximienne. [Ironic, with the air of a woman 
making a scene in her own home.] Yes, you know 
me, since you are afraid of me. 

Theodat. I fear God; I fear the Church and her 
commandments. ''If the Bishop be not married, let 
him not look upon womankind ; and if he be married, 
let him put away his wife.** 

Maximienne. Those are horrible commandments. 

Theodat. Blasphemy 1 

Maximienne. And you speak of blasphemy, you 
who have scorned the sacrament which united us for 
ever . . . [She makes a horizontal gesture] here 
. . . [She lifts her arm above her head] and above. 

Theodat. [Simply and with the consciousness of 
piling up useless arguments.] You know the decree 
of Pope Gregory? 



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196 THEODAT 

Maxtmtkt?kb. No. But if it concerns Bishops, I, 
the Bishop's wife, am interested in it. 

Thsodat. Do not jest — ^it is a terrible thing. For 
having kept Ids wife in Ids honse, for having seen 
her — yon understand f — ^for having seen her jnst 
once, ^Hhe Bishop shall be deposed." Will you oon- 
denm me to that ignominyt 

Maximienkb. How much more tranquil we shonid 
be I Ignominy f Christ endured far more i>oignant 
ironies. Bend your head as he did, proud Pontiff! 
Ah, you have more pride, humble Bishop, than heart, 
good shepherd I 

[Anger glitters in the Bishop's eyes; hut he con- 
tains himself.] 

Mazimiskkb. Give me one good reason, only one. 
Tell me that you do not love me, that you never will 
love me, that you never loved me. 

Thbodat. I hate you I 

Maximibnnb. [Smiling, with a certain satisfac- 
tion.] That is not the same thing. 

[Thbodat is frightened hy the violence of his words 
and suddenly finds himself glad to see that Max- 
IMIBNKB has not been hurt hy what he has said.] 

Thbodat. [Half to himself:] I know, I know that 
to hate is not the same thing as not to love. Yet if 
I filled my heart with hatred, love would come out 
of it like the bubbles which burst on the surface of 
a narrow vase filled quickly with water. Alas ! alas I 

[While he murmurs with his eyes turned to the 
ground, Maximienkb has taken out the hrooch which 
held her white mantle on her shoulder — a mantle of 
the same whiteness as her tunic: she throws it on 
the hack of the hench and appears unth her arms 
hare hut covered with hracdets, her neck slightly 
uncovered and enclosed in a coUar, from which hang 
two little silver haUs shaped like heUs. Laughing, 



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THEODAT 197 

holding out her ha/nds, she approaches THBODAT,ii;fco 
starts, escapes her touch and moves over to the small 
bench. She rejoins him.] 

Maximibkhb. [Supplicatingly.] Theodat! Dear 
Theodat I How I love yon I 

Thbodat. [Overcome.] How beautiful she is. 
[But his emotion warns him of the danger.] She is 
as beautiful as hell. I hate her. She is too beautiful. 
[He cries dhud.] Go I Ck)I Tou shall enter a 
convent 

Maximiekne. [With assurance, but not insistent.] 
Oh, no, I will stay here — in my home. [She folds 
her cloak into a cushion, places it by the fire and sits 
doum.] I am quite comfortable here. 

[Thsodat walks in agitation up and doum the haU 
and after several turns stops in the middle with 
folded arms.] 

Thbodat. But you consented to live in a convent 
There one is at peace; there life is calm and so 
sweet : a little labour with the hands ; books ; plenty 
of that parchment that is so rare and precious; 
simple food, but certain and eaten in happiness. 
'*Go therefore and eat thy bread in peace and drink 
thy wine with gladness." 

I thought you were at Tours t 

Maximibnkb. At Tours I I have never left Cler- 
mont I hid myself, I lived on alms like an old 
woman, I was dressed in rags, I shut my bride ^s 
clothes in a chest and I held out my hand. You your- 
self have given me bread and wine at the gate of 
the Basilica, not every day, but almost every week, 
when I suffered too much and when I had to choose 
between seeing you and dying. 

Contented I Yes, I tried. I was brave, but my 
strength has gone • • • [She rises and goes towards 
Thbodat.] Ahl don't repulse me. 



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198 THEODAT 

[Thbodat starts away. He is deeply touched, hofth 
ever, and mutters, closing his eyes.] 

Thbodat. Poor Maximiennel 

Maximibnkb. Why make me suffer when I have 
the right to be happy — ^when it is my duty I My place 
is here. Have I come to tempt yont But I deliver 
you from temptation— I am your wife. You have 
changed, Theodat; you have greatly changed . . . 
I am still the same, still your Maximienne. Listen, 
when you were only a priest, you loved me in secret 

Thsodat. [Half to himself.] Tes, I wanted to 
seem more virtuous than I really was . • • 

Maximiennb. Tou used to come to me in the even- 
ing, or it was I . . . You remember? Well, to-day, 
as then, I should be content in secret. 

Thsodat. To-day it is impossible. What was sin 
then would be a crime now. Every eye is fixed on 
me. No, no . . • [He laughs nervously.] Hal hal 
ha ! The Bishop and his wife — ^what an opportunity 
for the impious, for the dissimulating pagans wlu> 
spy on us I Ha ! ha I hal The Bishop and his wife! 
Halhalhal The Bishop taken in the act of a deadly 
sin — deadly, deadly, deadly I 

Maximibknb. My griefs are deadly. 

Theodat. Do you want us to have children that 
are accursed, incapable of inheriting, slaves bom 
in my church! 

Maximibknb. [As if speaking to herself.] Chil- 
dren, children . . • Tes, God might yet bless us, 
after ten years ... A child, a son . . . Why 
should he be accursed . . . Your decrees! Who 
observes themf Is Martial, your dear Martial, an 
accursed child! 

Thbodat. Do not calumniate the memory of Pru- 
dentius. Martial was the son of his dioice, not the 
son of his flesh. 



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THEODAT 199 

MAZTMTwyiffB, Everybody does not say thai Bnt 
let ns forget the holy Bishop and not speak of him. 
I am miserable because I have had no child with yon ; 
yon wonld love me more, if I had; yon wonld not 
seek, like a theologian, for excuses to put away your 
wife. Ah! be silent I Ton anger me! 

Thbodat. Bespect your Bishop. 

Maxtmtenne. I do not know the Bishop— I know 
only my husband, you, you, you. 

Theodat. Ah! Gate of Hell! You are she that 
touches the forbidden fruit in play. Ton are the 
daughter of the first law-breaker, she whom Tertul- 
lian said was more powerful for evil than the Demon, 
she who brushes the image of God from a man's 
heart! 

Maximibnne. Do not forget that you have taught 
me the Scriptures and the Fathers; cite me this 
passage: ** Woman, thy desire shall be to thy hus- 
band and he shall rule over thee." 

Thsodat. It is true — ^there is such a passage — 
you have a good memory — ^but . . . 

Maximienne. Ton see ! My desire is to my hus- 
band and I submit my will to you. 

Theodat. But it is also written: **Wine and 
women destroy the wise man's wisdom.*' 

Maximibhke. It is also written: ^^Woe unto him 
that is alone, for when he falls there is none to help 
him.'' 

Theodat. '^One man among a thousand have I 
found; but a woman amongst all those have I not 
found." 

Maxtmtekne. ^^The beauty of a woman gladdens 
her husband's countenance." 

Theodat. **And I found that woman was bit- 
terer than death." 

Maximiennb. [Going towards him with a smile of 



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200 THEODAT 

tenderness and desire.] I am not bitter. I am sweet 
Remember • • • Ejbs me again. 

Thbodat. [Starting back.] Impious I Are yon not 
ashamed? Wonld yon tear me from God? Leave 
me, leave me to draw ceaselessly nearer to Him. 
Remember Bodegesillns, Bishop of Nantes. His 
wife pursued him like a sin until at the moment when 
she attempted to drag the sacred vestments from 
him there appeared an accusatory witness of the 
divine protection — a lamb of glittering white ai>- 
peared on his breast. Beware of a like prodigy. 

Maximibnnb. What an argument! The real 
prodigy is that you no longer love me. 

Thbodat. For me also Gtod may perform mira- 
cles. Simplicius was vowed to chastity and God 
permitted this marvel — ^that burning coals whidi he 
carried in his mantle no more burned the doth than 
if it had been stone. 

Maximibnnb. [She hursts out laughing and stirs 
the fire, which breaks into a livelier flame.] Will 
yon try? Come, let this be the judgment of God. 

Thbodat. [He feels that his mind has wandered 
into absurd arguments whose weakness he is imme- 
diately sensible of, for if the Lord performs mirades 
it is not permitted to ma^ to tempt the Almighty to 
use his power. He breaks out angrily.] Hence, evil 
woman I Go to Tours, go to Badegonde from me, to 
Badegonde who has escaped the caresses of the king 
her husband. Gto I 

Maximibnnb. You, Bishop, will never escape me, 
for here the personages are reversed: the Glothaire 
here is a woman, stronger than many kings. 

Thbodat. Hence, Eve I Hence, Satan ! I will call 
my clerks, the levites of my sacred guard. 

Maximibnnb. Let them come, your clerks, and I 
will say to them: **My husband has called you to 



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THEODAT 201 

"witness that he had put me away and now calls me 
back.^^ Let them come^ let them come^ your episco- 
pal guard. 

Thbodat. I have more powerfnl arms; I have 
shields more impenetrable than human breasts I I 
will take refuge beneath the shelter of my sacred 
vestments. God, once more, bless once more my 
sacred vesture. 

[With outstretched arms and lifted head he re- 
cites like a prayer the symbolic enumeration, without 
noticing Maxtmibnnb's ironic interruptions.] 

Thbodat. I will put on the Amice, broidered with 
the cross of my salvation; 

The Alb, which embraces my body with purity and 
whiteness ; 

The Almuce, which protects my consecrated head ; 

The Stole, symbol of the yoke which holds me. 

Maximiennb. [Who has been listening in aston- 
ishment, approaching him.] Both of us beneath the 
yoke of the Stole. 

Thbodat. The Fanon, a fetter on my arms and 
neck to remind me of the fragility of earthly bonds. 

Maximiennb. Our kisses will make them more 
solid than a bar of iron. 

Thbodat. The Chasuble, which covers me like a 
small house, entire and closed on all sides, the unity 
and integrity of my faith. 

Maximiennb. I wiU force the lock. 

Thbodat. The Cope, which defends my shoulders 
against profane burdens. 

Maximiennb. I am light as a woman. 

Thbodat. The Dalmatica without a join like the 
robe of my Saviour, image of the cross on which He 
was nailed for man's sake. 

Maximiennb. I will bear half of your cross. 



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202 THEODAT 

Thbodat. The Gloves through whidi my left hand 
knows not what my right hand doeth. 

Maumibnns. Give me your right hand — ^I will be 
discreet 

Theodat. The priestly shoes, which lead my feet 
npon the right way. 

Maxtmtknnb. I will follow the traces of your f eei 

Thsodat. The Girdle with which I have bound my 
loins and my desires. 

Max imtbn ke. I will break the clasp. 

Theodat. [His arms faU to his sides like cut 
boughs.] Lord, you have heard? — Shameless 
one I 

Maximiennb. [Sadly, unth a touch of anger.'] 
Ton did not think me shameless when you crept to- 
wards my house at the fall of evening and when you 
forgot everything in my arms so that one day 
the morning sun surprised us together! You 
did not think me shameless when you provoked my 
kisses with your caresses. You loved me. 

[Maximienne is silent; slowly, with an air of dis- 
couragement, she walks towards the organ. As she 
preludes with a few notes, the Bishop becomes rest- 
less and speaks in a voice of impotent and weary 
anger.] 

Theodat. The holy organ I The sacred instru- 
ment of liturgies, the accompaniment of prayer! 
Maximienne ! 

[But she begins to sing. He listens. She sings 
and accompanies herself on the organ, which after 
each stoma, repeats the melody without the words:] 

Ubi sunt amatoria, 
Ubi sunt adjutoria 
Qui prima desideria 
Revorcarent ad amatumt 



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THEODAT 203 

Qnid lumen luet ridendof 
Quis flatus flabit virendo, 
Quae flamma surget f ovendo 
In deserto derelictamt 

Thbodat. [While Maximienne continues, without 
tihe words, her improvised melody.^ She seems to 
^v^eep as she sings I 

Maximienne. [The organ ceases; she comes down 
€tnd stands by the BishopJ] Once I Most I say that 
again, Godf Once, you loved mel At least re- 
member our old joy. May its memory be as sweet 
to you as it is sweet to me. Tou possessed me and 
J possessed you as a treasure. Theodat, I had only 
you, I have only you I 

Theodat. [With an effort, trying to hide his emo^ 
tion.] Mel Mel You have God. 

Maximienne. I have Him no longer. 

Theodat. He is everyone's. 

Maximienne. He has left my heart. I had Him 
only through you. In you alone was He visible and 
sensible to me. In you, adored intermediary, I found 
Him, felt Him^ loved Him! • . • No, I can live no 
longer. . . . You are my husband — ^I love you — ^you 
belong to me I 

[She puts her hand timidly and yet with resolth 
tion on Theodat 's arm — her hand contracts at the 
touch of his flesh through the sleeve.] 

Theodat. [In a softening voice.] Take pity on us I 
Think of our salvation, of hell; think of hell! 

Maximienne. Hell is to live without you. Heaven 
to sleep quietly in your arms. [Theodat remains 
mute and immobile; she starts away.] Barbarian! 
Barbarian, less feeling than the stones of your 
basilica! [She picks up the clothes that made her 
disguise as an old womun; she flings them on her 



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204 THEODAT 

back.] I am going . . . Good-bye . • . This time 
you will never see me again. 

[She goes very slowly.] 

Theodat. [MdMng a half step towards his wife.] 
Maximienne ! 

Maximiehkb. [Not stopping her very slow move- 
ment.] All is over. Ck)od-bye. 

Theodat. [Leaning forward.] Maximienne! 

Maximxekne. [StiU moving.] Ah, cruel, cruel! 

[She bursts into sobs.] 

Theodat. [Going forward resolutely.] Maxim- 
ienne ! 

Maximienne. Good-bye. (Jood-bye. 

[She touches the door, where her hand gropes for 
a moment. The lock yields and Maximienhe is dis- 
appearing like a phantom little by little through the 
opening. Theodat rushes forward and catches her 
robes.] 

Theodat. Remain. I love you. 

[Maximienne allows him to bring her back; she 
shuts the door and very softly pushes the bar over, 
then yields to his arms. Theodat takes her over to 
the bench and sitting down places her on his knees, 
caressing her more with kisses than with words. 

He touches her, he contemplates her, he is happy. 
Her woman^s dress troubles him almost as much as 
the woman herself. Here are her gold-embroidered 
shoes, held to her ankles by silk bands, her green 
girdle fastened by a btuihle on which are two Roman 
soldiers, leaning against little byzantine columns, 
watching the tomb of Christ.] 

Maximienne. You gave it to me. This ring— 
you gave me that, too — ^you remember? I was only 
your promised bride then. As long as I have it on 
my finger you will love me. How can I doubt its 
power after such a proof I 



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THEODAT 205 

Theodat. [Bending down and picking up a hey 
hidden under the bench.] Look, this is the key of 
the little door. I give it into your hands. 

Maxtmtennb. [Clutching the key eagerly.] I have 
yon again ! Ah, I am happy now. If yon only knew 
my life, my sadness, my tears, since yon aban- 
doned me I 

Thbodat. I, too, have suffered. I thought of you 
always, always, even in my prayers. 

Maximiekke. The dream which brought me here 
did not deceive me. 

Thbodat. A dreamt From God perhaps? Yes, I 
hope so; I think so. 

[He caresses the white tunic with its embroideries 
of red silk and gold, the scarlet breast-fold. He 
loosens the collar whose clasp is formed of two united 
crosses; he half opens the little silver spheres. In 
one is a fragment of the mantle of St. Etien/ne; in 
the other, a parchment on which a skiUed hand has 
written the Gospel according to St. John, which pre- 
serves W5 from sudden death and all unforseen mis- 
fortunes. The spheres shut, Thbodat respectfully 
touches them with his lips. 

He takes off the bracelets, constellated with dark 
stones; he touches the gold circlet which holds her 
hair.] 

Thbodat. How beautiful you are! I am well 
beaten. 

[He carries her towards the bed, smiling and vic- 
torious — a new Eve!] 

THE END. 



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THE OLD KING* 

A Play in One Act, translated from the French of 
Bemy de Gonrmont by Itichard Aldington. 

The People of the Play. 

OiLDAs : King of Andaine. 

Guislainb: Daughter of the King of Andaine. 

YoLAND : Prince of Locmaria. 

Gbbmainb : Maid of honour, illegitimate sister of 

Gnislaine. 
Florainb: Lady in waiting, sister of Gnislaine, 

daughter of the Eang and a woman 

slave. 
Gautibb: Page. 

Pages, soldiers, servants. 

The action takes place in the castle of Akdaike, t» 
the great hall hung with arras, between nightfaU 
and sunrise, in the year when a bird of fire ap- 
peared in the sky. 

*AI1 rights of r^roductdon on the stage or in book-form are 
reserved bj the translator on behalf of the hidrs of the late Bemj de 
Gonrmont. 



206 



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THE OLD KING 

By Bemy db Goubmont. 
(Authorized translation by Richard Aldington.) 

FiiOBAiKE. [She finishes setting out the lighted 
clay lamps, flowers on trees of bronze, then, opening 
the shutter of the ogive-shaped window, she looks* 
long into the night while the evening tmnd stirs the 
wings of her head-dress, like that of an angel. She 
clasps her hands and exclaims happily, counting on 
her fingers — for one by one the stars are coming 
out.] One eye, two eyes, three eyes: one alone is 
the eye of God; two axe the blue eyes of Jesus smil- 
ing at His mother, our Lady; three are the Wise 
Men on their knees in the straw and in the glory of 
the stable. — One eye, two eyes, three eyes: the mel- 
ancholy flames of the lamps tremble like souls when 
the angelus, crying at dawn, recalls them to the 
prison of purgatory. — Oh I that I might be deliv- 
ered, I also, poor soul of love, for one whole autumn 
night, or, if Gtod willed, for one spring day, when 
the willows are so soft, blue and green, so tender 
with their flowering tears-nielivered a little from 
my love, Yoland, lord, you, who hold me always in a 
harsh prison of love within your dark gentle heart. 

Yoland, your heart is black as a prison-tower and 

1 eat there bread which is harder than the rings with 
which you bind my legs, Yoland, and my white arms. 
Yoland, the poor servant's arms are wMte and warm 
as the fleece of a lamb, as the young lambs tottering 

207 



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208 TEE OLD KING 

on their legs. [She lifts her arms with a gesture of 
love; her wide sleeves, falling hack, leave them 
naked.] Yoland, here are my arms! [But she 
blushes, perceiving her nakedness, hides her arms, 
one falling along her robe, the other resting on the 
half -opened shutter.] I am drank with the scent of 
the stars! O sky, garden of thyme and hawthorn, 
garden of roses and columbines, here is the choir, 
amorons of woes, here prince Iris who smiles in his 
helmet with its violet crest Here is the carnation, 
a golden-haired page ; here is Yoland, a sun flowering 
in the sim of my dream. 

[She is silent and stands immobile, yet seems to 
be very far away. At this moment GAimBB comes in 
and, perceiving Floraine, approaches, kneels doum, 
and is about to kiss her hand. With an apparentty 
unconscious movement, Fuouautr^q hand slips away.] 

Gautieb. You escape like a serpent under the 
briars, like the water of a stream. Your hand passed 
over my hand like water through fingers. Give me 
your hand, Floraine ; I am thirsty ; let me drink it 

Flobainb. [She turns, hiding her hands in her 
deep sleeves.] No, I cannot play any more. I have 
thought about it — ^it is too serious for play. 

Gautieb. But I am serious too, Floraine, when 
I look at you. Do I seem to be laughing T Look at 
my eyes I Floraine, I will play very seriously with 
you. 

Flobaike. What would you dot 

Gautieb. You will see, you will see; I will give 
you kisses on your hands, your arms, your cheeks, 
your mouth! 

Flobaine. On my mouth, Gautierl But that is 
a sin! 

Gautieb. Your hand, first of alL 

FiiOBAiKE. No. Your eyes frighten me. Yes, 



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5 THE OLD KING 209 

^ your eyes are serious ; they are too serious. Poor 

"'- little Gautierl My bauds are chaiued, my arms are 

- bouud, my cheeks are iu prisou, my lips are sealed. 
^ ULay Qod deliver me, little Gautierl 

■ - [She kisses his forehead, holding his head in her 

- hands, and then disappears.} 

- Gaxttibb. "Why do my eyes frighteu hert My 
!. eyes are blue, my soul is blue as the kiss of sky and 
■i sea; my eyes are gentle, my heart is gentle as the 

smile of the first leaves of an oak. My hair is a 
£ foliage of desires and dreams where the wind of life 
plays with love. Strip oflf my leaves, wind, and bear 
! me towards the track of the white-winged ships on 
the flowering seal O blossoming sea, wild garden 
of waves ! You are afraid of a desire. Moraine, you 
are afraid of a bird : I am afraid of myself, Floraine, 
for instead of a gentle child I find a man who says : 
'^I love and I desire.'' Your lips had the grace and 
power of two suns and of a double spring: the tree 
has all its branches and its shade is fertile. Come^ 
sleep in my shadow. 

[He stands up with his arms stretched out and 
he can he seen to grow larger and to become a man. 
At this moment, the window opens, a puff of wind 
bends the dear flames of the lamps, thunder bursts 
overhead and a flash of lightning flies through the 
night. Gildas enters slowly but unth a look of sus- 
picion and mistrt$st.] 

Gildas. The cannon, bells, torches • • • 

Gautibb. Lightning and thunder, my lord! The 
elements have revolted under the paternal eye of 
fheir master. In the time that it takes to open and 
shut one's eyes three times Nature has done the 
woric of a long and laborious year: then God spoke. 

Gildas. "What do you meant 

Gautieb. Look, my lord, how in a moment I have 



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210 THE OLD KING 

beoome from a page^ the child I was yesterday, a 
captain to serve you better. 

GiiJ>AS. It is true. The sap rises without onr 
seeing it; it rises like an odour and the leaves have 
budded when we think the life still buried under the 
grass. It is true; you can look into my eyes with- 
out lifting your head. • Your glance is proud. To- 
night you dmfl command the company of pages. 

Gatjtieb. [He bends on one knee.] I render you 
homage and swear fidelity to you, King Gildas. 

Giu>AS. You will defend this part of the castle^ 
the women, and, most of all, my daughter, the prin- 
cess Guislaine. 

Gatjtisb. And then Germaine and then Floraine — 
yes I But why to-night t 

Giu>AS. Be silent and follow me untQ the bell 
rings. You know nothing, thenf Have women's 
mouths secrets now for the ears they kissT Have 
the she-cats become mute, do they make love sil^itlyf 
Gautier, tell me the truth t 

Gatjtieb. [He trembles before old GUdas' impe- 
rious voice.] My lord, I love Floraine, but she has 
kissed me only once— on the forehead. 

Gildas. Ah I On the forehead! Like a sister, 
little brother! But you should take her, force her 
to cry out, make her speak! At the moment when 
her soul is darkened by sensual mists, she will speak, 
without knowing what she does, the words and the 
names which her blood drifts along her veins. She 
will speak your name perhaps — or perhaps the name 
of Yoland. 

Gautieb. [He pales and repeats in a sad voice:] 
Yoland! 

Gildas. Do I pierce your breastf Draw your 
sword and defend yourself! Defend her whom you 
love against herself and against Yoland^ 



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THE OLD KING 211 

Oaittieb. Tolandf 

GiLDAS. Everyone here loves Toland. Toland is 
popular — ^nnder gowns and petticoats. From An- 
daine to Locmaria^ Yoland has passed through all 
the branches, and, like a fox, over all the virgin 
hedges. She who has not yet had Yoland will have 
him. Bingy bell; bum, torches; he shall not have 
Guislaine while I live I 

Gautibb. Nor Floraine I 

GiiiDAS. Well said, brave boy! But understand. 
I am old. Guislane has taken a great deal of my 
authority. The soldiers are devoted to her and I 
no longer dare to give orders, for fear of seeing 
myself snubbed by a respectful disobedience. My 
authority is now only in my glances, in my words, 
in my gestures: wherever I am not present, I no 
longer reign. So I wander by night and by day; I 
bear the fear of my presence into the very cellars, 
and I listen. There is silence when my heavy step 
echoes under the vaulted roof, but women's voices 
are shrill ; they trickle, like water, through the walls. 
"When I pass in the silence of the night, the walls 
say: ** Yoland, Yoland! Yoland.** — ^I have refused 
hirn my daughter's hand ; I know that he will come 
to seize her, I know that treason will open the gates 
to him, and I know that he will come to-night. Gau- 
tier, old books have taught me many things and the 
stars are my friends. Natalis will ring the bell. He 
is in his tower; he watches, he exorcises and he 
prays. Prayer is stronger than law, but law gov- 
erns the inferior world; whoever knows it escapes 
its tsnranny; by prayer and by exorcism he directs 
actions according to their true end, which is the glory 
of God and the salvation of men. Yoland is a 
heretic, Yoland has revolted, Yoland is luxurious: 
war for love, war for aggrandisement, religious war! 



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212 TEE OLD KING 

He tears off the scapular which blesses the breasts 
of women and the medals which purify their hearts ; 
the fear solely of the people, not the fear of (Jod, 
makes him respect churches, priests, calvaries, and 
the saints. Lord of Heaven and You, Virgin, His 
earthly mother, deliver me from evil! Child, take 
this dagger, it will identify you to the castle guard; 
I shall be everywhere, at the doors, at the walls, at 
the mines. Come and choose a sword. 

[Giu>A8 and Gaxjtieb go cm/.] 

GxTiSLAiKs. [She enters by another door, followed 
by Floraine, and advances silently, like a conspira- 
tor, looking, listening, then speaking, at first in half- 
tones.] They are going down the great stair-case. 
To choose a sword! "Why should that boy be slain f 
But, Floraine, since this young Gautier is wooing 
you, he ought to obey you. How is it if he loves you 
that he f oUows Gildas 1 You are betraying me. 

Floraine. I, madamet To betray you would be 
to betray myself. I love Count Yoland like yourself 
and as much as you: conqueror and master, he will 
choose between the princess and the serving-woman 
— ^but if he wants me for his slave, I will be his 
slave. 

GxTisiiAiNB. And his mistress. 

Flobaike. May Gk>d hear you I 

GuisLAiNB. Insolent and scandalous creature t I 
will have you hanged when Yoland is King! 

Flobainb. I shall tell my name, sister, so that I 
shall have my head cut off instead. 

GuisLAiKB. You have no name. 

[Enter Gebbcaine.] 

Flobainb. Guislaine, Germaine and Floraine, the 
three sisters, are marked by the same sign : the same 
joys, the same sorrows, the same loves. 



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TEE OLD KING 213 

OxTisLAiKB. Chance t 

Florainb. [She turns bach her sleeve and Guis- 
r-AiNE's to the shoulder.] Show your arm, Germaine. 
Sisters, you see the three sister stars, the three red 
stains, the three flowers of blood. 

Gebmainb. [She strikes herself and her sisters in 
the breast, as children do in their games.] To Guis- 
laine: Daughter of a Queen. To Floraine: Daughter 
of Pain. To Herself: Daughter of Hate. 

Florainb. [Playing the same game.] To Herself: 
To love. To Guislaine: To reign. To Oermaine: 
And yout 

Gebmaine. I am neither daughter of a slave, nor 
daughter of a queen, but bom of violence and adul- 
tery; my destiny is less clear: it seems to me that 
I do not love life. I have never held a man's hand in 
my hand without desiring to break it or to bite it, 
for man is strength, his hand is action. 

GxnsLAiNB. They play, they chatter, they act like 
little girls ! You know that it is for to-night t 

Gbbmaine. At what timef 

GxjisLAiNB. Towards morning. At the time when 
he is asleep, when he falls, dropping his stick and 
his lantern, tired at last with having dragged his 
ghost along all the stairs and into all the cellars. 
To-night or the next night, but be ready : the orders 
have been given. You will remain here or in the 
gallery. In case of need — ^the underground passage 
in the chapel under the Altar of Saint Anne. 

Gbbmainb. What shall we do with the old Eangt 

GxTisiiAiNB. Let him remain a ghost t 

Gbbmainb. Yes, but he has gestures, glances,, 
words; people obey him. His kingly look penetrates 
hearts like an imperious perfume. Let us make sure 
of him, respectfully. 



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214 TEE OLD KING^ 

GuisLAiNB. No. He wanted war; let >iiwi endure 
the lot of the conquered. 

Gebmaine. Do not be so harsh towards your 
father. 

GuisLAiNB. He will not understand. Childhood, 
fallen like an over-narrow garment, has covered his 
head. We will say nothing to him. Without know- 
ing it, he will pass from the state of a king to that 
of a shade. He will have the cellars to walk in, and 
the darkness for a kingdom: we will leave him hia 
lantern and his large, blind-man's stick. 

Qbbmainb. But let us tell him what we want. 

GxnsLAiNB. The king is only a word, but a sword 
is lifted against us, young, proud, and luxuriant as 
a young shoot of the year: ash, hazel or willow, it 
must be broken. 

Floraine. Who? 

GuiSLAiNE. You know. 

Floraine. Gautiert 

GuisLAiNB. And you alone can break this imperti- 
nent rod. 

Floraine. Howt 

GuisLAiNE. Howl He's in love with you, fool I 
The man who loves a woman belongs to that woman 
as a mouse belongs to a witch. You can strangle 
him, you can poison him — ^you can make him sleep. 
You have hands, you have Ups — Floraine; when the 
trumpets sound under the ramparts, Gautier must 
be sleeping either in the shroud of death or in the 
shroud of love. You can be gentle ; you can intoxi- 
cate him so deliciously that he will bless the poison- 
ous lips and their savour will be to him an insatiable 
desire. He is an eldest son. Take him and inherit 
with him the barony of Audieme. 

Floraine. You do not know me, Guislaine. Thine 
is a simple, foolish heart. I love Yoland; I will 



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THE OLD KING 215 

offer myself to him and, if he takes me, I shall be 
his happy slave. If he spnms me from his knees, 
I shall never love anyone but myself, made sacred 
through having loved the impossible. Gautier is a 
pretty boy; I like him; but I am boimd, I am pris- 
oner; Yoland holds me with his strong knees, I feel 
the bite of the spurs and the bite of the snaffle at 
my mouth : I go where he guides me. 

GxjisLAiNB. Poor thing! Yet you know what the 
tragedy is to be and what part we have written down 
for you. 

Flobainb. The actors sometimes forget to speak 
certain verses and if their memory fails them they 
sometimes fill up the text with unexpected words. 

Gebmaine. But what is this Gautier to do, whom 
I saw yesterday playing with the little peasants? 

GxnsLAn^E. He is to command the guard which 
will defend this part of the palace. I overheard the 
instructions which the King gave him. Folly 1 But 
he is brave and may be dangerous. Yoland is not 
invulnerable. 

Gebmaiks. I will look after him. 

GuisLAiNE. Yout 

Gebmaine. Do I not look like a woman f My heart 
is like a man's — ^and I hate my brothers — but my 
breast is flesh and not crystal: the god of my mon- 
strance is hidden. 

GuisLAiNB. I have confidence in you. 

Gebmaikb. Believe in me, for I love you. 

GuisLAiNB. Sister, you have sometMng terrible 
and adorable in you. Yours is the only voice which 
commands my limbs and which makes my arteries 
tremble like streams ruffled by the wind. Shall I 
find you both here in a little while t 

Gebmaine. Here, or in the gallery. 

GuisLAiNB. I am going to give the soldiers drink. 



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216 THE OLD KING 

Gbbmaike. You yourself! 

GuisLAiNB. Myself. My pitcher pours wine; my 
hand pours fire. 

[GuisLAiKE goes out.] 

Gbbmaine. Do not yield, Floraine. Be the ironic 
bird which mounts from bough to bough as the child 
approaches the tree. And — Glisten to my confession. 
I am ashamed and I suffer in the depth of my man's 
heart I feel a coward before the cowardice of trea- 
son and my honour is revolted when I think of the 
old man rent by our plots. 

Florainb. You, Hatred! 

Gebmaine. I do not hate the innocent or the sim- 
ple or the weak. Am I Hatred, Floraine! I hate 
only the males who desire to humiliate me in my 
flesh or in the flesh that I love. I love Guislaine ! I 
love Guislaine, my divine sister, a queen elect by 
every drop of my blood — Glisten! and I am jealous 
of Yoland. My hatred is named **Yoland." I do 
not wish him to take my sister. I am Guislaine 's 
faithful server, and I do not wish her to have a 
master. 

Floeainb. You 8i>eak of her like a lover! 

Gebmaine. And I would like to have the right to 
speak of her so, Floraine I 

Floraine. Would you be a man! 

Gebmaine. I would like to dare to be a man . . * 
No, Yoland shall not enter here. 

Flobaine. And I! 

Gebmaine. Go and find him again. 

Flobaine. No, I will wait He will come, he must 
come. The bird waits. The bird will not escape the 
fowler. Ah I Germaine, I wait, I wait delidously. 

Gebmaine. But think! If he takes the kingdom, 
he takes Guislaine. 



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TEE OLD KING 217 

Flobaike. He does not love Guislaine, he loves 
Floraine. He does not love Guislaine, he loves the 
kingdom. He does not love Guislaine^ he only takes 
her to get the kingdom. He takes the kingdom only 
to give it to Floraine. Ah I How happy I shall be I 
How I shall run in the meadow of love I How I shall 
play with the lambs, with the flowers, and with each 
blade of grass I They knock at the gate of my prison. 
Enter, fair prince I Enter, sun I Here are my arms, 
my lips I Here is my heart filled with dew I Enter, 
fair prince I Enter, sun ! 

Gebmaike. Why don't you sing the whole song, 
Floraine t 

FiiOBAiKE. Enter, fair prince ! Enter, sim I Here 
is my heart filled with dew I 

Gbbmainb. No! Here are my eyes filled with 
tears! 

Flobainb. No I Here is my heart filled with dew I 

Gebmaike. No! Here are my hands filled with 
blood! 

Floraine. Leave the blood in my veins and the 
tears in my eyes. I want to keep all my strength to 
love Yoland and all my tears to laugh like a child 
with Yoland, with the eyes of Yoland, with the arms 
of Yoland, with his heart, with his limbs, when I 
offer him my crossed hands like a stirrup . . • 
Think, Germaine I I am the war horse and the love 
horse. He leaps the hedge, if the gate is shut, and 
he comes to sniff his master's hands — ^he trembles 
and a shiver runs from his loins along his legs to 
the very horn of his hoofs ! Yoland is my master 
and my cavalier. I would be damned for Yoland *s 
sake! 

Geemaiije. How well you speak your love! I 
cannot si>eak. I think of mute caresses, profound 
and dark, and I am afraid of my desire. 



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218 THE OLD KING 

Flobaike. You desire to be happy, you desire to 
live at the feet of Guislaine, and I want you to be 
happy. Let everything go, let this night end, and 
when Yoland, before setting foot here, kisses the 
hands I hold out to him, when Guislaine moans in 
terror and kisses our knees, you will come and em- 
brace the fallen queen in your maternal arms. 

Gbbmaike. You tell me your dream, Floraine, but 
Yoland — do you know him well! 

Floraine. I love him. 

Gebmaikb. a bad answer. A woman's heart is a 
child's heart. . . . Will you be my friend! 

Floraine. Yes. 

Germaine. And do you want us all three to be 
saved and to be queens! 

Floraine. I do want that. 

Germaine. Take half the kingdom, take all the 
west of the Forest to the edge of the sea, and let 
that be the dowry you bring Yoland. But let him 
respect the castle of Andaine and let neither his men 
nor himself ride across the river Yves. Let him 
add that domain to the domain of Locmaria and let 
old Gildas die in peace in the care of his two daugh- 
ters. If you have not lied, if Yoland loves yon and 
has loved you since he saw your legs three years 
ago at the ford of Grollon when we passed through 
the water, laughing like two careless girls ; if it is 
you whom he chases from flight to flight under the 
trees and in the glades of Andaine; if it is for you 
that he bums huts and ruins towers, go, give him 
what he wants and let us be happy, each in our own 
pleasure. 

Floraine. No, no, he shall be King of Andaine, 
he shall be the conqueror, the master, the destroyer. 
He must see Guislaine and Floraine captives before 
him and choose Floraine, and my sister's pride must 



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THE OLD KING 219 

be ptmished and I will mount on her shoulders and 
kneel on her loins. But nothing more. I will pro- 
tect her and you shall not be separated from her. 
Tou shall be treated as the daughters of the Eang. 

Gebmaikb. Noy Guislaine is the only queen. I 
want to be the queen's sister and not the bed-fellow 
of a fallen princess. I want what is now. Long live 
the King! By betraying Guislaine, I betray treach- 
ery and I make the happiness of my love and the 
glory of my heart. Yoland shall not enter here. 
Everything shall be stopped. I am going to find the 
old King and from that Gautier whom you despise, 
Floraine, I will forge a sword which will crush out 
your eyes. 

[Gbbmaine goes out.\ 

Flobainb. I believe in God and in Yoland; I be- 
lieve in my love. I am the servant and the mistress 
of the Eang. I wait for the meadows to be rosy, for 
the gentians to shed tears of gold ; I wait for Saint 
Michel to descend the miraculous stairway of heaven 
and for St. George to pass, reaping the ripe com. 
I await the sword which will sever the thread of the 
Virgin and the lance on which my hair will float 
like a trophy. I await the conquerer, the lover. 

Gautibb. [He enters quickly, looking proud and 
J^PPy-] Floraine, be glad. We shall remain mas- 
ter of the town and of the whole kingdom. The army 
is rejoicing over an approaching victory and I shaU 
be Lord High Constable. 

[He kneels before Floraine, whose thoughts are far 

away.] 

Deign to accept my love, Floraine, deign to be- 
come a woman through him who without you would 
be still a child. Floraine, give me your eyes for an 
alms, your beautiful, soft eyes, Floraine. ... I 
am giving you everything I have, my youth, my 



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220 TEE OLD KING 

strength, my frankness and the glory whose kiss I 
feel already on my heart I give you my death, Mo- 
raine, for I will die for yon, if Gk>d desires that I 
should die. 

Flobaine. [She looks at him, caresses his head, 
a little touched.] Be good, child. Yoland is erud 
to offenders. Be good, for I want to save you. 

Gautieb. [Standing up.] It is I who protect 
you I Floraine, you speak to a knight, not to a 
page. . • • 

FiiORAiNE. Let me go, let me go I I have only just 
enough time to go and put on my best robe to re- 
ceive the victor. 

[Floraine goes otU.] 

Gautieb. Everyone thinks of Yoland here. Every- 
one loves him: Floraine loves Yoland. Shef She 
who has made me a man loves a rebellious prince 
whose sword has the ugliness of a boar-spear. Flo- 
raine, mother of my heart, who brought forth my 
desire, am I then the son of treason and shame f 
Long live the EangI My first love is my first dis- 
gust. 

Gebmaike. [She comes in during his Ic^st words.] 
Gautier, where is our lord, Gildast 

Gautieb. Gildasf He is everywhere, in the cel- 
lars, in the arsenal, on the ramparts, in the Tower. 
He will die with honour. I sh^ not abandon him. 
I shall be near him and the young sap of the wild 
seedling will gush out under the axe at the same 
time as the blood of the old oak. 

Gbbmaine. You talk like a woman I Ck>me. Give 
me your sword. Have you the password! There is 
a trap-door under the altar of St Anne; you can 
escape. 

Gautieb. [Sadly and indignantly.] Oh I 



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THE OLD KING 221 

OBBicAims. He is not a coward I ... He has 
l>loody red blood under that sof t, fine skin. 
[She caresses his cheek.] 

This hand is hard as a gauntlet. 
[She takes his hand.] 

This arm is supple and strong, like a sword. 
[She holds his arm in her two hands.] 

There is a heart in this breast, an invincible heart. 

[She touches Gautier's body with her fingers.] 

Qautier, Gildas has diosen you as lieutenant; he 
lias done welL We have confidence in you, for you 
only can stand against Yoland, iron against iron. 
[Touchmg the hcmdle of his sword.] 

Oht Here is a sword which asks only to lose its 
virginity. 

[Gautieb blushes.] 

You blush, prince? 

Gautieb. Madame, I am not a prince, and could 
I become one if I must fight against Gildas and 
against felony t Gildas said rightly: ** Everyone 
here loves Yoland. '' I am in despair. There is noth- 
ing but death for me. 

Gebmaii!^b. Again f To die when a King's daugh- 
ter. • . • 

Gautieb. Moraine is not a King's daughter. 

GsBMAiira. How do you know? 

Gautieb. I do not care. 

Gebmaike. You give her to Yoland, without fight- 
ing, without regret, without shame! 

Gautieb. I will fight but not for Floraine, for I 
blush to love her since my love was too weak to 
tear her from treason. I shall fight for the Eang; I 
shall fight for myself — ^for you, madame. 

Gebmainb. He is gallant as a page and pretty 
as a girL Come! Be brave and hands of joy will 
pour more caresses for you than your heart can 



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222 THE OLD KING 

drink. Child, who despairs when he has only to 
smile to be loved I Gome, look at me I What beauti- 
ful eyes he has. 

[Her cape opens and shows a smaU part of her 
breast. Gautieb is moved, for Gbbmaine is beauti- 
ful.] 

Let me see what colour they are; they are blue, 
like grass in the meadows. . • . Wait. • . . 

[She takes his head and kisses his eyes, then makes 
him sit near her on a Coffer covered unth thid^ 
fleeces.] 

. . . I cannot telL . . . Never have I 
breathed in so lovely a flower. . . . 
[She draws him to her breast and plays with his 
hair. Gautibb kisses her throat.] 

Will you fight for me! 

Gautieb. Yes. 

Gebmaike. For me only! For me and the King! 

Gautieb. Yes. 

Gebmaike. You will kill Yoland! 

Gautieb. Yes. 

Gebmaike. He frightens me. . . . Shall I be 
the wife of this child! 

Gautieb. [He puts his arms clumsily about her.] 
I am a man. 

Gebmaike. Yes, in your eyes and on your lips is 
poison. • • • 

Gautieb. I do not understand what you are say- 
ing; I want to close your mouth. 

Gebmaike. No, no I 

Gautieb. With my mouth. . . . 

Gebmaike. [ Who has shrunk back. ] No, no ! You 
love me like the fly which seeks a crevice in whidi 
to plant the poison of life. . • • 

Gautieb. Yes, I love you; I want to live in you. 



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THE OLD KING 223 

Obbmainb. Do yon love me enongh to obey me, as 
if I were the lover and you the mistress f 

Gautieb. Yes, 

Gebmainb. You say **yes,'' because you desire 
me. Your heart beats not with love but with desire, 
liine also, Gautier, and my mouth like yours is hun- 
gry and thirsty for flowering flesh. Do you know 
howl can love f 

Gautieb. I know nothing. • • • I would like 
to kiss your knees. 

Gebmainb. Guislaine, my sister, his hair is 
long and gold like yours. O Guislaine I love you in 
liim. . . • 

Guislaine. [She enters slowly and noiselessly, 
her head high and ironic.^ You see, Germaine, there 
'was a hole in your breastplate. 

Gebmainb. OhI . . . 

[To Gautieb.] 

Go. 

[Gautieb rwts off without a wordS\ 

Gebmainb. Pardon, pardon I It is you alone! I 
was surprised, but that youthful head — ^I thought 
of your beauty, Guislaine, as I caressed it. 

Guislaine. What? What have you admitted t 
The desire of my body, you, a woman, you, my sis- 
ter? You think of the grace of my limbs while you 
play with a page? What I You want to see me 
naked? Here are my arms, here are my shoulders, 
here are my breasts. They are of a marble which 
cannot be moved by a woman's eyes, nor by her 
hands, nor by her lips. You are looking? 
[She draws her cloak closer.^ 

Folly I So you love me for that, for my skin, for 
the shape of my breasts? You love me in a fleshly 
way? Ah! Well, if the hour were less tragic I 



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224 THE OLD KING 

would let you have your way, I would allow myself 
to be caressed by your impotence. . . . 

Gbbmaikb. Ah yes I 

GuiSLAiKB. As one allows a boy to make love to 
one to pass away an hour, to laugh at the difference 
between the desire and the act. • • 

Gbbmainb. If you knew t 

GxnsLAiKB. The pretentions of vain voluptuous- 
ness weary me. Two little girls lying in the moss 
and playing like perverse angels or foolish turtle- 
doves. Ah, you are dangerous within for man nor 
woman I Gt) and skip and let your glances glide un- 
der your companions' petticoats. My sister f My 
adulterous sister, if I wish to recognize her. • • . 
Are there no officers here to tear the evil herb of 
debauch from my ladies of honour f Go to the guard, 
to the postern; they are bored. But you have Gau- 
tierf Have you chosen a girl among so many malesf 
Ha I He ran away like a girL . . . 

Gbbiiaikb. He fled from you. He will not flee 
from Yoland. 

GuisLAiKE. Leave me. I need neither your love 
nor your aid. Go. 

Gbbmaike. I obey you because I love you. 
[She goes out.'] 

GuisLAiKB. This is what they are! This is their 
devotion I The dog follows the trail of its vice. One 
would stain her sister's robe: the other, impudent 
daughter of a slave, dares to dream of the hand 
elected for my pleasure. Am I not the Queen, am I 
not the mistress f Am I not she whose bold will 
made fertile the plot whose future will soon be bom, 
like a lovely child f Incorruptible flesh : shining head ; 
smile, whose perfume saddens the roses themselves; 
my love, O my lover, O my lifel I am the world 
on the eve of creation; I am a chaos full of beauty; 



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3?' 



THE OLD KING 225 

I hold the sun in my night and the stars in my 
abysses ; streams of peace and of joy flow throngh the 
formless shadow of my mountains, and the mnd of 
my marshes glitters with the pure glory of future 
flowers. I am the sea, filled with the prodigious 
sigh of storms and waves; I am the doud which 
wUl weep with joy; I am the sown space of fields at 
the hour when spring casts in the world the divine 
veil of puberty. Yoland, marvellous labourer, here 
is your work, here your harvest, your reward, here 
is Guislaine. ... He wiU come. • • • I wait 
for the signal which will break this window. . . • 
Yet an hour, perhaps less than an hour, and every- 
thing will be accomplished forever I . . . 
[She muses.^ 
Everything has yielded to my passion— men, the 
interests of my people, my father and myself — and 
my honour I I had to lie, to betray, I must deliver 
to misfortune the old King who smiled so gently as 
he caressed my hair. • . • O my father I O my 
people I I am afraid, at the last moment I am 
ashamed. . . . Was that thunder! 
[A movement of fear.] 
No, it was my conscience grumbling. 

[A movement of impatience.'] 
Be silent, fool, and remember your love. Well 
said. I will think of my love. Love is everything. 
It is God, it is the world, it is the universal blossom- 
^ ing, the trees, bellied out like sails, and the grasses 
"^ moving like the tides. It is the beasts, the flowers, 
^^ women. I am a woman. I am the woman. What 
"^ matters to me your wars, your cities, your countries, 
*^ your laws, your kings and all the chains with which 
^ you deck your slavish shoulders ! I am a woman. I 
i"^ care for nothing but the joy of being beautiful, happy 
P and fertile. Everything must bend under the feet 



fi" 



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226 - THE OLD KING 

of my joy — ^it shall walk tritunphantly over every 
vanity and every tyranny. Give way peoples, kings, 
sergeants, nuns, beggars and priests, give way I A 
woman passes I Kneel down. She goes towards her 
lover, a radiant heifer lowing at the odonr of the 
male. Depart I The sight of a free, proud ftnimal 
would trouble the humility of your eyes. Stand 
aside I Let me walk in the glory of my resolution. 
I am life. I am she who blooms on ruins and who 
transforms the dark soil of dead leaves into live 
leaves. I am urged on by Gk)d. I go. I am every- 
thing, since I am. I want to enjoy the infinity of 
pleasure. I want to flower. I want the flower of 
my stem to be as large as the world. One man alone 
is equal to all men; my happiness is a right; the 
name of the only crime is sacrifice. . • . 
[Her exaltation ceases.] 
What demon speaks ia mef Speak yet, demon I 
Speak ! Sustain me ! Your words make a fan before 
my eyes. • . . Ah I I see corpses, I see convulsed 
hands, I see blood on the old King's white beard. 
. . . Yoland, Yoland, why have you not given the 
signal f Yoland, I am dying of anguish I . . • Oh ! 
my love vigil will be my death night. . . . 
[She listens, ivith her ear towards the door.] 
It is he, I can hear his staff, he is coming down 
the stairway of the Tower. 
[She opens the door, which remains wide open, and 

the old King is seen.] 
There is his lantern; it is really he. How old and 
weak he looks I He trembles like a tree in a storm 
and his staff slips on the stone steps. He stops. 
... He lays down his staff. ... He is sit* 
ting down, with his lantern near his feet. . . . 
How pale he is! He is asleep. . . . No, he 
speaks. . . . He is dreaming. 



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^ THE OLD KING 227 

^' GiLDAS, I am the King, I am everything, the 

' '^* i;irhole country, the forest, the stream, the town, the 

^? Tower, men, women and children. I am everything 

P^ and I am nothing : an old word, an old King, a dying 

^*^ torch. They will not understand that words are 

^? coffers full of gems, of medals, of necklaces. . . . 

^ ? They will see when the coffers are broken what treas- 

f ?- ures men had hidden there under the syllables carved 

n: by the centuries. . . . They will see when the 

ai city shatters under their fists and the country under 

u: their heels. . . . They will see when the edge 

i: of an axe or the point of a sword has killed the old 

:: King. . . . They will see everything that was in 

>j: his heart, all smiles, all desires, all pleasures, all the 

\\: tears of a people. There will come out blood and 

water, wine and nulk. They will see what a miracle 

an old King's heart is. Old King, old word, old cof- 

t fer worm-eaten and rusty I Old King I Why will 

j; they not let me die with the honour of an old Kingt 

;, No one cares for me now here. Everyone betrays 

i^ me. Everyone here loves Yoland. Yoland is young. 

Ah I Young King, you will eat one day the poisoned 

herb of treason. How old I am! It is true that I 

am very old. I can scarcely think. I always think 

the same things. ... ancient Kingdom, your 

,^ dreams, your songs, your saints, your heroes, the 

flowers of your apple trees and the eyes of your 

daughters, you give that all to the new-comer, to 

the stranger, the enemy, to Yoland ! Oh, you are old 

too, ancient Kingdom I Everything crumbles to 

dust, old words, old Kings ! Where is my staff! My 

lantern f How old I am! Old King, old word, old 

coffer worm-eaten and rusty. . . . Lord God^ 

why must I die by treason? Why, Lord, have you 

given me a daughter with a heart of iron! Oh, how 

long and difficult are the steps that go down to my 



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228 THE OLD KING 

tomb t The tomb of the old King, of the old King, 
of the old King. . • • 

GuiSLAiNE. I am afraid, I am afraid! How he 
dreams! 

GiLDAS. [Drawing himself wp.] My daughter, I 
am not dreaming, unhappily. 

[He rises and continues to descend.] 

GuisLAiNE. Father, listen! There is something 
within my breast which I want to tell you. . . . 
Oh, I beg you I 

GiLDAS. [He stops, lifts the lantern as high as 
his head, looks at his daughter a minute and replies] : 

We have nothing to say to each other, my daugh- 
ter ! The present does not understand the past. 
[He goes away; his staff rings on the fl^ig-stones.] 

GuisLAiNB. [Passing the door.] My father! 
[At the same moment the beU rings, an arrow breaks 
one of the panes of the unndow.] 

GuisLAiKE. The signal ! It is too late. I belong 
to Yoland. 

[She looks out through the broken pane.] 

There they are! There they are! Rise, sun! 
Clouds, tear yourselves apart. The curtain opens! 
I see ! He marches the first, sword in hand, and be- 
side him a red banner unfolds its flaming tongue. 
The gates! The gates! Wide open, the gates! 
Brave soldiers, how they obey my desire! Yoland 
has entered. The whole army follows him. I can 
count them. . . . One, two, ten, twenty, a hun- 
dred. . . . Enter, enter, servants of my heari 
Enter, royal ants, the city is yours. . . . Ah ! A 
flight of arrows! Cries, blasphemies! Who dares 
forbid my love the stairway of the Tower? • . . 
God! I can no longer see Yoland! . . . 



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THE OLD KING 229 

[Pages, women, soldiers, Flobaike and Gebb£aine 

enter. '\ 

FntST Page. Where is Gantier! What's to be 
donef 

Second Page. Gantier I Gantier I 

GuisLAiNE. Silence ! Away, valets I 

Thibd Page. Madame, we are here to gnard yonr 
hononr. 

GuisLAiNE. My hononr t . . . 

\To the soldiers."] 

Throw this impndent person throngh the window I 
Flobaine. Yoland I Yoland I 
FntST SoLDiEB. \To GuisLAiNE.] Madame, yon 
shonld retire. Swords are blind. 
GuisLAiNE. Obey I 

FiEST SoLDiEB. We obey only the King. 
Flobaike. Yoland! Yoland! 

[Gautieb enters, sword in hand.] 

Gautieb. Here, pages, to the right . . • 
Soldiers, to the left. • • • Make a hedge, a hedge 
of iron! 

A SoLDiEB. [Entering.] The King is dead! 

All. Long live the King! 

[Other soldiers advance, hearing the body of old 
GiLDAS. His forehead is split open; blood trickles 
on to his white beard.] 

GuisLAiNE. [Kneeling.] Old King! Old father I 
[Flobaine afki'GEBMAiNE also kneel down apart.] 
Gautieb. [Drawing Guislaike aside.] Depart 

from here. Take care, yon will stain yonr robe ! 
GuisLAiNE. [Approaching.] I mnst see him! I 

mnstseehim! 
Gebiiaike. [To a soldier.] Who killed him! 



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230 THE OLD KING 

Ths Soldibb. No one. He fell on the stairway 
when the bell rang. 

FiiOBAiKB. Yolandt Yoland! 

Youlsj}. [He enters sloudy, looks around, and 
says, lifting his sword.] Here is your King! 

All. Long live the King ! 

Gautebb. [Pointing to the old King.] Silence, 
people! . . . Dead or alive, there is no other 
King than Gildas. 

Yoland. Who are yon! 

Gautieb. He who picks up the dead man's sword. 
[Yoland shrugs his shoulders and attacks the Page 
disdainfully. Gatjtieb disarms Yoland 
and pierces him.] 

Gautieb. Gildas, I have kept my promise ! 

All. Long live the King! 

Flobainb. [Throwing herself towards Yoland.] 
Yoland I Yoland! 

Yoland. [Dying.] Then yon loved me, Floraine! 

GuisLAiNE. It is I that loved you, Yoland ! L L 
Ah, I have paid dearly for yonr love, Yoland, and 
yon die without thinking of Gnislaine I Oh t Awake, 
Yoland, look at me, speak to me! Oh! do not die! 
« . • Yoland ! Oh, at least let me gain something 
by my crime! Yoland! . . . Ah!day of horror! 
I must die also ! 

[She seizes Yoland's sword and slays herself.] 

Gbbmaine. [Throwing herself on her fallen sis- 
ter.] My sister ! My sister ! Oh, how beantiful you 
are, my sister ! Oh, oh, oh ! my sister is dead ! My 
heart is dead ! 

[She weeps.] 

Flobaine. [She rises and, sohhing, pointing to 
Gebiiaine, says to Gautieb] : Love her, my lord. I 
will be her slave. If I had hearkened to her this 



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THE OLD KING 231 

^otdd not have happened. • . . Oh! all these 
pale faceSy all this blood, all these tears I . • . 
liove her, my lord. 

Gautibb. [To Gebmainb.] Rise, madame, and 
come near to me! 

GsBMAiNB. [Obeying.] My lord, wiU you save 
me from the horror of my heart! 

Gautieb. If you love me, madame, you wiU be 
saved. 

FiiOKAn^E. [To the people, pointing to Gautibb.] 
Here is your King! 

Gautieb. [To the people, pointing to Gbbmaine.] 
Here is your Queen! 

Flobaike. Long live the King ! 

At.Ti. Long live the King! 

[The crowd slowly leaves the hall.] 

Plobainb. O Yoland, I am now your prisoner for- 
ever, prisoner without hope, prisoner with bleeding 
hands and with pierced heart ! My God ! I will live 
so as to be very unhappy, to suffer greatly, to weep 
greatly, to be a slave whose only joy is the pity she 
inspires. 

Gautibb. You are our sister, Floraine. 

Gbbmaikb. Love is your excuse, Floraine. 

Gautibb. Today there has been a great tragedy, 
in the kingdom and in my heart. 

May, 1897. 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY. 

IVACIOTJS, gesticulating groups of 
dark-eyed lads, black in a flood of 
bright, Italian sunshine, gathered be- 
fore the huge old college building: 
how often, in my student days at 
Florence, I have passed among them 
on my way to some murky little res- 
taurant after the morning classes; 
and how of ten — ^half a foreigner, al- 
though one of them — ^I have smiled to myself at the 
unvarying topics of the conversations that came to 
me in lively snatches as I went 

**How delicious she is I I*d give anything '* 

**Salvini! Salvini! Did you ever see him act, 

you! I tell you that Novelli ^' 

^^ She's got a mouth as red as fire. Dio miol It 
makes m o '' 

^^ Nothing of the sort! Semiramde goes like this: 

la— la '' 

*^Hey, Nellol Last night I went to Cotne Le 

Foglie — ^gallery, of course — and *' 

**He acts like — ^No, you are a madman not to see 
that it's his art to——'' 

Lovely woman, the opera, the theater; always 
these, iind think of it — ^boys from fifteen to twenty! 
It was no affectation, either; those terrible eyes and 
lips are a fierce obsession even at that early age, and 
play and opera are to these lads what baseball is to 
lads here. 

Think of it as an indication of what the drama 
must be and mean in Italy. The penchants of these 

232 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 233 

college boys are not a matter of acquired taste ; they 
are in the blood. How should it be otherwise where 
the warm, languorous nights make every garden 
Juliet's; where for centuries the most picturesque 
church on earth has fostered the dramatic sense of 
a people whose every utterance is spontaneously dra- 
matic t Italy's passion-hot drama is the great na- 
tional pastime. In its many forms it follows all 
the racial and socicd complexities of the national life. 
Besides the large companies which incessantly tra- 
verse the country, others reside in various districts, 
^hose native dialects they speak on the stage ; and 
still others, heirs to the broad wit of the Improvised 
Comedy (that bizarre creation of the masses, in 
•which tiie prototypes of Harlequin and Pierrot filed 
with extemporized comic dialogue the fantastic out- 
lines given them), continue to draw roars of laugh- 
ter from the good-natured, humble audiences among 
whom they dwell; while in the still medisBval south^ 
Mysteries even now preserve the link between church 
and stage, and so well that Judas is often obliged 
to fly for his life before the performance is over. No 
smallest town is without a theater; and men and 
women, young and old, noblemen and laborers \hink 
of it with almost equal zest as the ideal place of 
amusement. Indeed it is obviously so, to them, be- 
cause it is practically without competitors. The 
Italian does not like physical exertion, and though 
violent in anger and prone to admire such violence, 
finds barbarous a game like football; though he lives 
almost as much in his intellect as in his passions, 
he is not studious like the German — books are rather 
scarce than otherwise in the Italian house; his atti- 
tude towards art, too, is more a subconscious bask- 
ing in esthetic sunshine to which he was bom (and 
which he pines for the moment he is deprived of it) 



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234 THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 

than an inclination to make art a pnrsnit; business 
is work, strictly, and commonplace woi^ The de- 
lights of straggle for achievement are no delights 
to him: he sees the pain and the profit sei^arately, 
and the one greatly detracts from the other. He 
loves what comes to him ready and unalloyed; and, 
conscionsly qxuck with subtle gifts and sensibilities, 
loves the readiness with which he makes much come to 
him. In his drama, musical and otherwise, all comes at 
once to his mobile, gifted mind, to his delicately sen- 
sitive emotions, and to those hungry i)a88ions of his 
that are yet so strangely glamorous with inteUectual 
and emotional radiances and colors in which he sees 
them arrayed. Here no kill-joy preparation is re- 
quired, no dullnesses intervene, no responsibililies 
irritate; here life, condensed to its most dramatie 
aspects, unfolds itself before him as a thrilling spec- 
tacle — ^a thing of burning passion, and yet a beauti- 
ful thing of the mind. 

Passion, beauty, mind: these are surely the diief 
characteristics of the modem Italian stage — espe- 
cially passion, and in its most violent and tragic 
fomv3. What must strike the American first and 
most is the lava-flood of incontinence that over- 
whelms these plays. Even to the untraveled ob- 
server the thing must be only too palpable; of the 
forty typical plays described in Jean Domis' Le 
Theatre ItaUen Contemporain, thirty are based on 
illicit love. 

Adultery is the subject of nineteen. CavaUeria 
Rtisticana is but one of the four like it by the same 
author, nor is Verga in any way exceptionaL In 
Bracco's* The Masgueraders, a husband retains 

* As maj be eipeeted, plajwriglits are le^^ in Italy; tbe foikm- 
Ing are the beet known of those now liying: Bobert Braeeo, perhaps 
the most popular, is a kindly and keen ^metrver of the bourgeoisie; 
Moumg his most saceesaful plajs axe Don^ Fi&r Cameo^ n# if os- 



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i THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 235 

liome from a long voyage to find that his wife has 
<^imnitted snicide. Soon he discovers the cause ; not 
I even shame at her guilt but grief at being abandoned 
by her lover, his own business partner. **You have 
betrayed my honor/' he says to the seducer, **but 
, the crowd shall never suspect it and trample on my 
1 name ; beware how you relax an instant in your hypo- 
i orite's part. On with your mask, forward with the 
tjomedy ; you are mine to shield myself with as I see 
. fit; you have forged your own chains. '' 
^ In Eovetta's The Dishonest, it is the death of the 

lover that reveals all to the husband, who, appointed 
administrator by the heirs, discovers that the luxu- 
ries which he fondly imagined to be the fruit of his 
\ ivife's skillful economy were the price of her be- 
trayaL Dreading that others will read the truth 
- in any sudden retrenchment, he has recourse to 
theft; he is detected, and cursing the cause of his 
downfall, yet weakly embracing her at the last, he 
takes to flight, while she rolls to the floor in abject 
I agony. In Praga's An Ideal Wife, we see the hus- 
band basking in the affectionate solicitude of his wife 

^gueraders. The Unfaithful One. Gamillo Antona Traversi and hia 

] brotiier Qianiiiiio have portrayed with fine irony the high society to 

: 'Which they belong; the former's The Basenoe and the latter 's The 

( Bracelet probably hold the first place witii the public. Giovanni Verga 

ia the autiior of violently dramatic Sicilian plays^ sach as CavdUeria 

t Muttioana and The Foe Svnt, Marco Praga is an objective writer 

^ like Flaubert; The Ideal Wife, HaUelujdh, and The Virgins may be 

mentioned among his most successful works. Girolamo Bovetta is a 

flkillful dramatic impressionist, whose vivid settings, it is contended, 

create his i)S3rchologica]]v imperfect characters and make up for his 

disconnected plots. Dorina, The Dishonest, and Beality are three of 

Ms best plays. Enrico Butti, whose chief plays are discussed in 

these pages, is the dramatic analogue of Fogaszaro (who also has 

irritten a few plays). Gabriele D'Annunzio's Oioconda, Citta Morta, 

i etc, are highly esteemed, though it is recognized that they are more 

the work of a novelist than that of a playwright Sem B^ielli sprang 

suddenly from obscure frame-maker to noted artist with his Supper 

of PrwUcs: his subsequent plays have not been equally snccessfuL 

XXfi[o Ojett^ author of AU for Love, is one of the lesser but distin- 

artists. 



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236 THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 

and his old friend. With a gay farewell he leaves 
the room, and the wife flings herself passionately 
into her lover's arms. Without, all point and snicker 
behind the victim's ba<^ but he never suspects. Even 
when he finds his serene-faced spouse in the other's 
apartment, her candor disarms him; she is there on 
the same errand as himself — ^to warn the family 
friend of danger that threatens his brother. The 
lovers prudentiy part, at last, under his very nose; 
but he remains blissfully unconscious of any change. 
As the enterprising familiar coolly remarks to a 
friend, ^'the dame is an ideal wife — and an ideal 
mistress." In the same author's HaUelujah, the sin- 
ful daughter of a sinful mother utterly crushes her 
old father 's pride, already bowed with hidden shame ; 
in his Undine the husband's dread of betrayal — he 
has married an actress — ^tums him into a hysterical 
tyrant who finally drives his wife back to the stage. 
To the American this must seem more sordid than 
tragical Not so to the Italian ; to him it means the 
ever brooding tragedy with which the burning south 
menaces the peculiar and tormenting sense of dig- 
nity of the southerner. In Italy the betrayed hus- 
band 's cry of anguish is not one of shocked morality 
nor of broken-hearted affection; it bursts from his 
intolerable humiliation at having been defied and 
outwitted; at having been robbed to his face; at 
having been made a helpless object of ridicule to his 
fellows. When he slays the culprit, he is almost 
invariably acquitted, for he has washed his stained 
honor dean. In Italy the unfaithful wife is almost 
as great an incubus as the negro in the South here, 
and anyone familiar with conditions there must 
easily see why. D 'Annunzio 's women, half devil and 
half child, may be cruelly drawn; yet an irresponsi- 
ble child the Italian woman certainly is, in a meas- 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 237 

ure; and this because she is given little chance to be 
anything else. Camillo Antona Traversi^s The Hap- 
piest Days shows us her betrothal: arranged for her, 
squabbled over, artificial: more her parent's affair 
than hers. From the start, too, she is made to feel 
that she is too weak to guard her own integrity ; how 
often I have watched elder sister or puffing mother 
trailing along in the wake of some betrothed couple. 
Finally marriage puts an end to the trepidations 
of her parents, and thenceforth the husband watch- 
fully guards in her his uneasy honor. Small wonder 
that she comes to believe in her irresponsibility; 
small wonder that, cast thus into the arms of her 
ardent temperament, she comes to see in herself the 
preordained victim of the flaming, beautiful god. 
Passion, and willingly abandons herself to him when 
she is beset. And beset she is, without scruple, for 
it is not her childish honor that is considered, but 
that of her husband ; if he is a dolt unable to protect 
it, laughter is all he deserves. Is it strange that he 
dreads the disgrace of that taunting laughter; that 
he feels the menace of it envelop him with almost 
superhuman power; that in his struggle against it 
he assumes, in his own eyes, the tragic dignity of a 
Laocoonf 

Yes, terribly tragic, to an Italian audience, is the 
struggle between the overwhelmed mortal and the 
irresistible god. Terribly tragical, yet intensely se- 
ductive, even to the men, with the intoxication of 
sacrifice upon his altars ; for their blood also loves 
in him all the romance of love aflame with all the 
splendid fury of youth; and if woman is often 
likened to a serpent by them, she is always the di- 
vinely beautiful serpent that her victom must em- 
brace even while she slays him. As for their atti- 
tude towards plays in which their own many lapses 



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238 TEE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 

from virtue are portrayed, add to this glamour the 
familiarity of habit and you will understand what 
it must be. The American would hardly regard 
these '^ dramas of passion" in the same light. The 
heroine of Rovetta's Dora is wooed by the yomig 
marquis in whose mother's house she is a governess. 
Thereupon she is dismissed and falls into the hands 
of a beldame who urges upon her a vile means of 
paying her rent. When the enamoured youth seeks 
her out, the girl flings herself into his arms in a 
transport of joy. But alas, he has not come as a 
rescuer; convinced that he cannot marry her, un- 
willing to seduce her, yet unable to conquer his pas- 
sion, he sides with her evil coundllor. She drives 
him from her: then despair added to necessity com- 
passes her ruin. The marquis now seeks her out 
once more. * * Marry me if you want me, ' ' she scorn- 
fully replies, and, utterly infatuated, he marries her. 
G'est la grande passion; there's no resisting it. So 
finds Luke, the hero of Bracco's Triumph. A man 
of theories and books, his idyl with the yoimg artist, 
Nora, is purely Platonic* **My lips have never de- 
flowered hers,'' he declares. This amuses his friend, 
John, but horrifies a good old country priest of their 
acquaintance, who considers such love without con- 
summation unnatural and unholy, and, in hopes of 
bringing the two nearer to good old mother earth, 
invites them and their friend to his rural parish. 
The miracle is accomplished but not quite as he ex- 
pected, for it is the friend who profits by it, and 
without benefit of clergy. Not that the ascetic scholar 
remains untransf ormed : abandoned by the happy 
doves to vegetate as best he may, he earns an indig- 
nant rebuff from a rustic damsel who, she woukl 
have him know, is about to be married. Add to 
John's amusement, the priest's uncomprehending 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 239 

disapproval, and yon will nnderstand why the play 
based on sweet, soft nonsense is as rare in Italy as 
it is common over here. Doraf too, is instmctive in 
more ways than one. Chiefly it is the story of a 
man's surrender to passion; but incidentally — ^non- 
chalantly, almost — ^it is a study in prostitution, and 
as such again typical of many others. Where unre- 
strained passion is an indispensable concomitant of 
life, it is not surprising that its attendant evil should 
be equally familiar and as readily accepted; and the 
Italian stage is too faithfully representative to ig- 
nore the unfortunates who, in every narrower street, 
after dark, jingle keys at the passer-by or hurry 
whispering after him. Praga's A Woman is based 
upon a fact familiar to students of this unhappy 
class: their wretched calling does not banish love 
from their hearts; each poor Nancy has a hulking, 
villainous Bill Sikes of her own choice. Praga's 
Nancy is less ignobly the victim of her devotion tiian 
Dickens 's. For the sake of her idol 's child she strug- 
gles away from the slough, and when she finds that 
only separation can save it from taint, returns alone 
to the slums from her benefactress' house; then she 
kills herself. 

The passion in A Woman is not ignoble, and much 
other passion that flames to its tragic extinction on 
the Italian stage is nobler far than glorified lust. The 
fury of clashing knives in Cavalleria is brutal; yet 
it is the fury of fearless men who, if they scorn the 
discretion which is virtue, also scorn that which is 
the better part of valor. The heart-broken invectives 
of poor old Hallelujah are almost Shakesperian ; and 
there is something akin to religious contrition in the 
agony of remorseful filial love with which the hero 
of Butti's Race After Pleasure confesses to his dy- 
ing old mother that he has seduced his ward, and 



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240 THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 

betrayed his wife, and wreoked his home. Bofh these 
plays tell us that if Italy is the land of passions, one 
of these, at least — ^that which unites diildren and 
parents — ^is sacredly beautiful in its intensity, even 
though it may seem weakly submissive in the ones 
and patriarchally tyranniciEtl in the others. **Why 
do I hate the gendarmes?'' answered a burly sailor 
to my query; **I hate them because they are lost 
souls; they swear that they will arrest even their 
fathers and mothers if necessary!'* For such men 
as these GaUina wrote that touching story of a di- 
vided family's reunion in the name of loving remem- 
brance — ^his dialect play The Mother Never Dies. 
Even for such as these, too, Bovetta might have 
written his Romanticism, with its finely romantic 
hero, the patriot conspirator. Count Lamberti, whose 
arrest by the Austrians is the climax of his devoted 
struggle for his country and his faithful wife's for 
his honor and her own: even for such as these, who 
responding in thundering thousands to D ' Annunzio 's 
appeal, not many months ago at Rome, proved that 
among their passions is the noble one of country 
love. 

Passion conceived in flaming images of beauty: 
this is the hashish-dream which the Italian audience 
dreams. The play is the suggestion that conjures it 
up for these tropically colorful minds. There is 
something Elizabethan in this, and not in this alone. 
To the American, the Italian stage must often ap- 
pear as bare as Marlowe's. The Italian sees actually 
upon it all that it would convey ; and as he looks and 
listens, it fills with a spectacle in whose beauty the 
rich abundance of spoken imagery and the melodious 
grace of perfect lines blend and become visible. For 
the play, to be successful, must be not only a dra- 
matic but a literary work of art, whose merits as 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 241 

such will be enthusiastically praised in the news- 
papers the next day. D'Aimunzio's very stage di- 
rections are little masterpieces of description^ and no 
one who has seen Benelli's Supper of Prcmks can 
forget the limpid charm of its verse. But how leave 
D'Annnnzio with a wordt The visions of sylvan 
fairyland which arise from the pages of his Spring 
Morning's Dream are surpassed oidy by those which 
make the great Elizabethan's dream a thing of 
magic. To him who reads, Botticelli's picture ap- 
pears again with all its fascination of tender greens 
and all its charm of gentle graciousness ; with the 
shadows that haunt it pathetically darkened, how- 
ever ; for the nymph, surrounded by her companions, 
yet beyond reach of all their fond solicitude, wan- 
ders among the flowers and shrubs, a poor Ophelia, 
her mind forever darkened by the blad: night when 
she was bathed in her lover's blood and left with 
his icy body in her arms. Only in the words of her 
immortal sister is there greater power of evoca- 
tion or sweeter, sadder music than in hers. And if 
we hear this music, how should we be deaf to the 
stirring din of labor that comes resounding from 
the shipyards of Venice in The Shipf There is the 
birth of a great sailor people in the sound, and the 
whole of this epic play heaves with the vast breath- 
ing of the sea. In the last act, as we stand amid 
those sturdy builders who crowd the pier, intent 
upon the wide horizon, how vividly, in their cries, 
we see it coming, the long, swift slup homing on its 
broad, outstretched wings, like a hawk. 

These pictures and many more besides have ap- 
peared to my fancy in the written page, but I have 
drunk as deep of visible beauty at the theater. The 
Italian stage is often bare, but often, too, it frames 
tableaux than which no picture could be more strik- 



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242 TEE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 

ingly beantifaL I shall not soon forget the ridi fif- 
teenth century coloring, and above all the perfect 
compositions in The Supper of Pranks. Almost at 
the rising of the cortain the first occurs. The in- 
distinct snmptuousness of the dining-hall proclaims 
the patrician in the host. It is one of Lorenzo il 
Magnifico's great followers who graciously advances 
to meet the entering guest. We hear of two more 
who are expected; of a feud between them and the 
other, to be ended at the Magnifico's behest. Tet 
a few words, and we are watching the guest. He 
laughs and jokes right merrily as he tells how those 
two tied him in a bag and before all Florence ducked 
him in the Amo, then dragged him out, and then, 
while the crowd jeered, jabbed him in the buttocks 
with a knife. He has a hungry, seared-looking 
mouth, this gaunt young man; and his long fingers 
keep moving, as he laughs, like the twitching legs of 
a hurt spider. The old soldier before him, too, is 
watching him, but he has not understood j Ms words 
prove it: **And you— can laugh T But— but what 
are you thenl*' **What am IT*' — ^the lean, sensitive 
face twists into sudden whipcords of pain — ^**I am 
a coward. My knees shake and my teeth diatter 
when I meet them. They bullied and beat me when 
we were boys together; they taunted and cowed me 
afterwards ; when they found I loved a woman ten- 
derly, they took her from me, and when I tried to be 
brave (oh, just for once, you know!) they were upon 
me in a moment and — ^well, that little joke, by the 
Amo. And I laughed— I tell you I laughed, I tell 
you 1 Yes, there by the Amo, as they did it to me. 
You'll never guess why. Imagine how nice: I have 
got another sweetheart. Oh she is so lovely, so love- 
ly — ^Do you know her name? Revenge is her name; 
and she says : **If you want me ; if you want me all. 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 243 

all — ^then laugh I Laugh again 1 Laugh yet again! 
Laugh once morel Laugh! Laugh! La — Ah! Hal 
Ha! Ha!" He has flung himself backwards into a 
^eat chair, his legs stuck out stiff, his clutching 
hands turned to claws, his face branded across by 
the frightful laughter of his mouth. And at his 
elbow stands the princely host, in courteous distress 
— ^helpless; and behind them the hospitably laden 
board, untouched. As I gazed, I forgot where I was, 
that evening; but somewhere behind me the strain- 
ing silence cracked in a sudden rattle that rose and 
crashed thundering in one stupendous roar. 

The curtain has risen more than once when the 
second picture forms itself on the stage. We have 
seen the two swash-bucklers — ^brothers, they are — 
arrive, and with coarse taunts and insults greet their 
victiuL We have watched him, a cowering figure at 
one end of the table, still joke and laugh — slill joke 
and laugh, until one of his jests betrays the younger 
bully into revealing his love for the elder's mistress ; 
still joke and laugh till the elder (in an ugly mood, 
now, for his brother, who is evidently dear to him, 
has flung out of the palace in anger) furiously ac- 
cepts the playful wager that he dare not appear in 
armor to terrify a certain fashionable resort that 
night; still joke and laugh while the armor is pro- 
vided: then, as the savage, half -drunken daredevil 
rushes clanging out, change from laughter to a white 
flame of deadly earnestness, and hiss into his serv- 
ant's ear: ^'Go warn them that he is raving mad. 
But go! But run!'' This and much more we have 
seen, and with a growing sense of what is coming, 
inevitable as fate; a few exultant words have told 
us that the haggard youth hunts not for himself 
alone, tonight : the two reckless scoffers have aroused 
one whose displeasure means sure death, in Florence. 



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244 THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 

Now the curtain is up once more. Dark, and damp, 
and gloomy, a dungeon vault: a group of sinifiler 
attendants; a woman who tearfully pleads with 
them; and in the midst, roped to his chair, a gigantic 
man, his face bloated and distorted with fury, his 
muscles bulging against the cords. By will of the 
Magnifico, a doctor has been busy with hina, exor- 
cising the evil spirit. A tall lean youth enters and 
stands before him, hands on hips, ineffable derision 
and hatred in the smile that shrivels his lips from 
his teeth. The woman (not the stolen mistress, but 
another, betrayed yet enamored) renews her plead- 
ing: ^'He is harmless, now. Let him gol I will 
take charge of himi Let him go!'' The smile on 
the youth's face deepens with a strange ambiguity, 
as of hidden thoughts; his eyes are keen and bold 
with power. ** Loose him," he orders shortly; the 
attendants step forward at his command. As the 
ropes are unknotted the prisoner's great diest heaves 
in a savage relief; his huge body swells, becomes 
visibly bigger; forgetful that a dozen watchful eyes 
are upon him, he leans eagerly forward, fixing a ter- 
rible look upon his captor. The youth still stands 
erect before him. He is more than erect; he is 
rigid. So is his face; and his eyes — Slowly he 
shrinks back, shrinks up against the wall, shrinks 
twitching and crooked with fear into himself. Then 
it comes, horrid and quaking from between his 
teeth: **0h God, they are untying him!" Can you 
see him there? If a more terribly effective picture 
of fear has been painted, I have yet to behold it 

The play moves swiftly on to the last tableau. 
The youth has freed his enemy only that he may 
plunge to his destruction: ^'I shall spend this night 
with the woman who is no longer yours, poor lu- 
natic," he has told him; and he knows that, those 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 245 

'^"^ words spoken, he has only to watch the trap which 
^ he has set. The raging bully promptly abandons 
his deliverer and rushes off to his mistress, in whose 
:i: sitting-room a stormy scene occurs. He has come 
ir. to wait for the upstart, and presently follows the 
:' woman into her chamber, knife in hand. Then comes 
r the last picture; the most striking I have ever seen 
z- on any stage. The moonlight streams peacefully 
i into the deserted sitting room; through the open 
: window comes the sound of guitars and of a sweet 
-r voice singing. Suddenly the door opens, and a scar- 
. let spectre— a silent figure wrapped in a bright red 
cloak — ^makes rapidly for the still, dark curtain be- 
" hind which waits the knife. The scream of agony 
,r which bursts from the chamber a moment later is 
!, more relief than climax, for that apparition crossing 
the moonlit room was like tragedy itself made visi- 
[ ble. When presently the murderer parts the cur- 
tain and strides in, it is to stagger back in amaze- 
ment ; before him he sees his supposed victim, trium- 
phant beyond fear. **Go," says the coward slowly, 
', **GU> and look better at the rival you have slain.** 

Quick as his fancy is the Italian's reason. A plot 
] which proceeds by suggestions, leaving what to less 
ready minds would be unsatisfactory gaps, is char- 
acteristic of several of the Italian playwrights. The 
psychological steps by which the hero of Dora de- 
scends from suitor to seducer are left to be inferred 
from his lack of plebeian sturdiness; the moral 
crumbling of the husband in The Dishonest is a con- 
tradiction to such as have not heard the cracked 
pot in his preceding disquisitions on honesty; the 
arrest with which Roma/nticism ends leaves us to re- 
member what we have read about the Spielberg, and 
on the other hand to decide for ourselves whether 
the would-be seducer has gained anything by his 



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246 THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 

infamy. The problem-play, too, though not elderiy- 
pedagogio like Ibsen's, is frequent. Hallelujah con- 
tends that the sinfulness of the parent shall be visited 
in sinfulness on the child ; An Ideal Wife constructs 
for us a wife who shall be faithful and unfaithful 
at once ; the Boccaccian philosophy of The Triumph 
is too apparent to require comment. But most not- 
able of all are the plays of Enrico Butti^ himself a 
scientist and philosopher. The Utopia proves ad 
absurdum that scientific doctrine moves too swiftly 
in theory not to be as a devastating buUet when 
aimed f uQ at slow-going humanity. Dr. Serchi, like 
many of his profession in Italy, is a positivist phi- 
losopher as well as a physician. True to his con- 
tempt for marriage forms, he has taken to himself 
a '^companion''; and enthusiastic in his advocacy of 
Lycurgan methods against the deformed, he delivers 
a lecture on the subject in the little town where he 
is sanitary officer. The result is dismissal and ostra- 
cism, for the lecture has revolted even his easy-going 
compatriots. Leaving his companion to wait for 
him, he sets off in search of more enlightened 
hearers. He returns discouraged to find that a de- 
formed child has been bom to him, and that the 
broken-hearted mother, whom love had made his 
disciple, now demands in the name of a still deeper 
love that the little unfortunate be not only cherished 
but given a name. The Race After Pleasure, Luci- 
fer, and The Tempest form a veritable treatise 
against atheism. They further resemble Fogazzaro's 
novels in the method they adopt ; no avenging Jeho- 
vah actually appears, but the atheist is hurled down 
by supreme misfortune and left to ask himself of 
what comfort his disbelief now is. In the first it is 
mere youthful flippancy that comes sobbing to its 
knees beside the death-bed of a beloved mother; in 



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THE ITALIAN STAGE TODAY 247 

the second it is the deliberate conclusions of old 
** Lucifer,** the skeptical professor, that — shaken at 
last by the agonized prayer of a widowed son for 
strength and belief — ^leave the old man staring out 
of the window and muttering, **Who knows? Who 
knows?** In the third it is the coarse, pseudo-rea- 
soning of a syndicalist that, after the usual ver- 
bosity and blasphemy, results in delivering the 
peasantry of an old-fashioned but upright uncle into 
the hands of a dissolute and spendthrift nephew. 
"Jean Domis** sees in these plays the deeply re- 
ligious spirit of the Italians — ^which seems to me 
like inferring the patient's love of physic from the 
physician's prescriptions. It is precisely to a skep- 
tical majority that the plays are addressed, and it 
is the philosopher in the skeptic who improvises 
spirited debates on them around the cafe table after 
the performance. Indeed, the Italian's marked phi- 
losophical tendencies explain much in his attitude 
towards the stage: to a certain extent, Ms indulgent 
unconcern before the "shocking** spectacle; largely, 
his appreciation of the witty irony which almost 
completely supplants less intellectual mirth, and his 
enjoyment of the otherwise unrelieved sadness of 
his drama. 

Such is the Italian stage today; or rather that of 
the regular companies, which, however, are far more 
representative and far more widely represented 
than the others. It must seem strangely exotic to 
the English-speaking world, and yet there is some- 
thing very similar to it in English literature ; I mean 
the work of Byron, who, incidentally, is one of the 
few English poets read and admired in Italy. In- 
deed I might put it, roughly, that the Italiaii play 
is Byron's metrical tale with more of intellect and 
much more of hot detail added. Here we find his 



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248 THE ITALIAN 8 

romantic passion, his colo 
sadness — even his careless 
qnently the Pindaric flights 
doubtedly the result of impa 
too, We find — ^perhaps mon 
come to think of it — ^the proi 
is rich. May it this time si 
sacrifice and struggle, and 
realized in the Itidian stage 



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From a »tafue hy Anne Whitney, sculptor 
"""'^'"•'"'D,ame6ty^Ol&gl^"' 



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THE STOBY OF THE HTJLL-HOUSE PLAYEES. 

|0 have an organization devoted excln- 
sively to dramatic work was a cher- 
ished plan of Miss Addams from the 
earliest days of Hull-House. Nearly 
all the social clubs included the pro- 
duction of plays among their activities, 
and frequently a boy or girl would be 
noted who seemed to possess exceptional ability as 
an actor. These young people were later brought 
together in a group which was called **The Hull- 
House Dramatic Association/' and several plays 
were given by them, but interest in the movement 
soon waned, partly, perhaps, because of the diflSculty 
of securing a permanent director, and the project 
was finally abandoned. 

We had no theatre in those days and the rough 
stage of the gymnasium was used for all dramatic 
affairs, the clubs for the most part getting up their 
own scenery, which was of the simplest description. 
Years after, Hull-House was presented with a beau- 
tiful little theatre the equipment of which has been a 
labor of love for all the clubs doing ** dramatics'' at 
the Settlement. 

Sporadic theatricals given by different groups 
continued, however, and many young people were 
discovered who cared little or nothing for the social 
features of their clubs, but to whom the plays were 
a powerful appeal It seemed then that the time had 
arrived for the formation of a permanent dramatic 
group, and with this purpose in mind, in October, 
1901, Miss Addams called together twelve young 

249 



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250 THE HULL-HOUSE PLAYERS 

people, all of whom had achieved distinction eitiier 
in Hull-House Clubs or in the Dramatic A8so<aation 
which had passed out of existence. At this meeting 
a company was formed which adopted the same 
name as its predecessor, **The Hull-House Dramatic 
Association,'' and I found myself chosen ** director," 
a position I accepted then with many misgivings, but 
which after fourteen years of service I have come to 
regard as a source of happiness and pride. 

Later Mr. Joseph Jefferson was Miss Addams' 
guest at Hull-House and the members of the new 
association were invited to meet him. His advice 
and encouragement were a great inspiration to us 
and the work of our first years was largely based on 
the plan he outlined, which emphasized, not so mudi 
what we should do, as how we should set about doing 
it. Soon after this we were given the opportunity 
of listening to Mr. Yeats, the Irish Poet. His talk 
mystified us greatly, and it was many years before 
we came to understand his point of view, whidi now 
seems very clear. 

Our opening production was a melodrama which 
we chose for several obvious reasons ; the company 
was most familiar with that type of play; my own 
stage experience had been largely along such lines 
of work; and the neighborhood from which we ex- 
pected to draw our audiences still loved the old- 
fashioned drama with virtue triumphing and vice 
suitably downed in the last act. So we began re- 
hearsals of A Mountain Pink with unbounded con- 
fidence and zeal. In ten weeks we gave our first per- 
formances. I am sure the acting was bad. I know 
our ** villain," who based his interpretation upon 
that of the *^heavy lead" at the *^By Joe" (Bijou), 
a nearby theatre in Halsted Street, fairly **ate up 
the scenery" in the great third act, winning loud 



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THE HULL-HOUSE PLATERS 251 

hisses from an appreciative gallery. But many peo- 
ple patronized ns, the neighborhood was delighted, 
and at the close of the three night's **run'' we had 
two hundred dollars in our treasury and so vivid 
a sense of achievement that to do Gilbert's Engaged, 
which we chose for our second play, seemed a minor 
undertaking. 

An incident of the production of this comedy is 
worth noting. We needed a wedding gown for * * Min- 
nie Symperson'* in the second act. A resident of 
Hull-House who had been active in promoting the 
company, playing a part or painting scenery as occa- 
sion required, offered to borrow one from a friend, 
a fashionable **Mrs. Newly-Wed,'' living on the 
North Side. The young lady was startled, but was 
both obliging and game, and the mimic bride from 
the nineteenth ward wore the white satin ** creation*' 
for the three nights of the play. The real bride and 
her friends came to see us, and that was the begin- 
ning of a large and faithful following from the 
North Shore, which has never failed us, and to 
whose friendly interest is due a large measure of 
success. 

This was the end of our first year. The next sea- 
son began early and we managed to do three plays, 
chosen mainly as studies in technic, in which our 
company was sadly deficient. Up to the end of the 
second year, the personnel of the group had re- 
mained about the same, but with the improvement 
in our methods an automatic process of elimination 
began. Some who could not keep up with the strenu- 
ous pace dropped out, and more studious young peo- 
ple, or those with more leisure, came in. A change 
in the neighborhood, which began about this time, 
also left its mark on the company. Our Irish and 
French neighbors were being crowded out by 



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252 THE HULL-HOUSE PLAYERS 

Italiaiifi, who did not care for performanoes in 
English, and we were compelled to look elsewhere 
for onr audiences. This meant plays of a different 
type, and at the end of the third year we gave for 
the first time in America, Ben Jonson's The Sad 
Shepherd, with the songs and Morris dances as in 
the original production by the London Stage Society. 
This play was our first mile-stone. We were ** no- 
ticed'' by the press, and people from various parts 
of the city came to see us ; but this recognition meant 
hard work, for our standards must again be raised, 
and better plays produced in smoother fashion for 
our new clientele. 

The fourth and fifth years were filled with unin- 
terrupted hard work, with one or two esi)ecially suc- 
cessful presentations, notably Bernard Shaw's Tou 
Never Can TeU, and Ibsen's Pillars of Society, whidi 
moved our gauge a few notches higher, and brought 
us new friends and patrons. We were earning a 
good deal of money with our plays, most of which 
we used in improving the stage of our little theatre. 
Sometimes we went together to see a good perform- 
ance. She Stoops to Conquer with Mr. William 
Crane and an excellent company was one, and the 
meeting with Mr. Crane, who received us on tiie 
stage between the acts, is an abiding memory. 

In 1906-7 we gave two Shaw plays and three 
Pinero comedies. The company had ruled after the 
Ibsen performance that the membership should be 
limited to fourteen, and that no one should be ad- 
mitted until he had played at least two parts accept- 
ably and had proved himself to be socially agreeable 
to the members. This sounded rather selfish at first 
hearing, but the harmony which prevailed in our 
company, which was made up of most diverse ele- 
ments, was a sufficient justification of the measure. 



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THE HULL^HOUSE PLATERS 253 

Bather uneventful were 1908 and 1909. We re- 
hearsed steadily and managed to do three plays. A 
visit from Mr. Laurence Irving, for whom we played 
Pygmalion and Galatea and Kerry, encouraged us 
very much. As he remained through the perform- 
ance he must have believed we were worth seeing. 

In 1910 we gave Galsworthy's The Silver Box with 
such favorable press comments and such large 
patronage that it was freely predicted that our heads 
would be turned. But nothing of the sort happened. 
The company remained earnest and unspoiled, and 
did not seem to realize at all that in asmall way it was 
becoming famous. By this time most of the group 
had moved out of the neighborhood, which had be- 
come entirely foreign, and all of our new recruits 
lived far away from Hull-House. We decided to 
put on (Jalsworthy's Justice. It was very difficult 
to stage, and required long and frequent rehearsals, 
but no one complained. It was a source of pride to 
ns all, when we finally produced the play — ^which ran 
for ten nights — ^that after the first performance, 
every seat for every night was sold. Shortly after 
this Mr. Galsworthy paid a visit to America, and 
iTiras entertained at Hull-House by Miss Addams. He 
ijiras apparently deeply interested in our work and 
gratified with our success in his play, and we were 
very proud and pleased with his approval A few 
months later we invited Holbrook Blinn, whose 
rugged, manly style of acting we greatly admired, 
to be our guest, and we were glad to receive and fol- 
low the suggestions he most generously gave. 

It was about this time that we decided to change 
our name to **The Hull-House Players.^' The old 
title seemed rather cumbersome, and with our new 
ambitions we felt ourselves a Uttle more than an 
association. We had long desired to give an original 



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254 THE HULL^HOUSE PLATERS 

play which would deal with local conditions, and 
quite unexpectedly in the spring of 1911 the oppor- 
tunity came. A young Jewish girl of the neighbor- 
hood, who was making rather ineffective attempts 
at play-writing, at my request dramatized Leroy 
Scott's stirring labor story, The Walking Delegate. 
We presented this, after many alterations and mudi 
hard work, with great success. Naturally the play 
lacked the symmetry and finish an older dramatist 
might have given it, but it was a **thriller'' after all, 
and we who live in the stir and stress of the labor 
movement found it, as one critic said, ^^ uncanny in 
its realisuL" The final ]>erformance was mailed 
with a touch of romance, for the young author was 
married in the morning and came to see her play at 
night with all her bridal party. Miss Addams gave 
a reception to celebrate the event, to which players, 
bridal party, and residents were all bidden, and so 
the season closed in happiness and triumplL 

I do not wish it to be supposed that the career of 
the Players had all this time been altogether untrou- 
bled. Stage life, even for amateurs, is not all ''beer 
and skittles,'* and many ''downs'' as well as "ups" 
had been experienced. The local dramatic critics, 
who were in the main friendly to us, occasionally 
gave us what is known as a "roast" Probably we 
deserved it, or possibly they thought we needed 
chastening, but such experiences really did us good, 
for after the first "heart-break" the company pulled 
itself together and for the next two or three plays, I 
was careful to choose something that would help us 
to correct the weakness that had been so ruthlessly 
pointed out. One thing that operated greatly to our 
disadvantage was that, after we played The Pillars 
of Society, many people and some newspa]>ers which 
should have known better, persisted in regarding us 



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£ THE HULL-HOUSE PLATERS 255 

t as being on a professional basis, quite ignoring the 
: fact that every member of the company, as well as 
I myself, was a wage earner, and that only two even- 
ings at most could be given to rehearsals. It is need- 
less to say that, try as we might, we could not live 
up to any such standard as that, but the effort we 
made was valuable, and being compared to com- 
panies **down town'' and praised or blamed accord- 
ingly, an incentive to study and to strive for profes- 
sional accuracy and skill. 

In 1912, by permission of Mr. Galsworthy and the 
courtesy of Mr. Winthrop Ames, we were able to 
present The Pigeon. This play was a success, quite 
as much, we felt sure, because it was well done as 
because it was new. Following six performances 
of this, we put on a number of short Irish plays, 
which had just begun to appear in print. I know 
we did these welL Six of the company were of Irish 
parentage. They found it easy to acquire a delicious 
brogue, and they seemed to catch instinctively the 
spirit of the author. Many who **came to scoff, re- 
mained to pray'' when we gave these charming lit- 
tle plays, and while we were still in the spell they 
had cast about us, something came which, in a way, 
changed the whole current of our experience. This 
was the advent of the Irish Players. Of course we 
knew all about them. We had produced some of 
their plays, and the fact that they, too, had been sim- 
ple, private folk who acted for pure love of acting, 
regardless of any personal sacrifice, was in itself a 
powerful appeal We were present at their first 
night in Chicago. We met Lady Gregory, who said 
she had ''heard of us" and who promised to come 
to see us in some of her own plays. This she did 
soon after, not only once but twice ; the second time 
bringing with her several members of her company 



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256 THE HULL-HOUSE PLAYERS 

and generously offering ns the use of all her plays 
whenever we wished to give them — a privilege we 
availed ourselves of gratefully. During the four 
weeks' stay of these gifted actors, a very warm 
friendship sprang up between the Irish Players and 
the Hull-House Players. We saw them in tiieir en- 
tire repertory, and a study of their methods was a 
liberal education. We entertained them in various 
ways and they seemed as interested and as pleased 
with us as we were with them. Their parting words, 
**Why don't you come to Ireland f sank deep, and, 
when my company came together in the September 
following, it seemed not at all an impossible project 
to make a holiday trip to Europe. After the decision 
was made, we * * buckled to. ' ' No professional group 
ever worked harder. We gave six entirely new plays 
in our own theatre, among them the (Ufficnlt The 
Tragedy of Nan and Kindling, the latter produced 
by the courtesy of Miss Margaret Hlington. We 
were very successful in this ; the types were familiar 
to us and the ** problem'' such an every day one that 
the characters almost played themselves. In addi- 
tion to these productions at Hull-House, we played 
ten engagements in nearby suburbs, and five quite 
out of town for colleges and the Drama League, all 
of us, meanwhile, working the usual long hours in 
various ways every day. The public took an inter- 
est 'in our unique plan and warmly supported us. 
The Lake Forest Players, who were our staundi 
friends, generously came in town and gave us a rous- 
ing ** benefit" in our own theatre. And we played 
six nights in repertory in a small down-town play- 
house, more or less devoted to "uplift drama," and 
this added a substantial sum. Mr. Percy Ma[oKaye 
paid us a visit at this time; he carefully watched a 
long rehearsal and gave us valuable advice and such 



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THE HULL^HOUSE PLATERS 257 

words of encouragement that, if there had been any 
doubt in our minds as to our ability to carry through 
our plan, it was dispelled. I look back on his visit 
with grateful remembrance. He **builded better 
than he knew.'' In June we gave a full week of 
plays at Hull-House, which were well patronized, 
and as a result of all this, by the time we were ready 
to go, we had earned three thousand dollars. This 
was not quite enough, but a generous friend loaned 
XLS six hundred dollars to make up the difference and 
on June 28th, 1912, we sailed away for a holiday 
which was to be ** Forty-two days from Chicago.'' 
Our passage had been secured and paid for early in 
the year, and the direction of the tour was in my 
hands, as all the dramatic work had been from the 
beginning. 

It was a wonderful voyage, crowded with all the 
charm that invests a ** first trip to Europe.*' One 
incident especially I remember. Miss Addams was 
on her way home from the great suffrage meeting in 
Buda Pesth, and was on the ocean coming west while 
we were going east. We decided to send her a wire- 
less when we were sufficiently near. **The Hull- 
House Players on board the Celtic send you loving 
greeting." It was a wretchedly dark and stormy 
day, with a rough sea, and it seemed uncanny to 
receive a reply in four hours. **Love and good 
wishes. Communicate with Lady Aberdeen when 
you reach Ireland." This was exciting, but nothing 
to compare with the wonderful events that were to 
follow. I have crossed the ocean many times, but 
never on any trip have I experienced the thrill that 
came when I saw the coast of Ireland that lovely 
July day, with my little group of Players close by. 
It was like a dream come true, and we were cJl 
secretly wondering, I am sure, whether we would 



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258 THE HULL-HOUSE PLATERS 

not suddenly awake and find ourselves ba<^ in 
Chicago. 

It was at the end of an enchanting day at Killar- 
ney that a cordial message came from Her Excel- 
lency, Lady Aberdeen, who had been with Miss 
Addams in Paris and there heard of our visit She 
welcomed us to Ireland and asked us to give a per- 
formance for her in Dublin. This was great news 
indeed. We had not planned to play anywhere. We 
had no costumes and no parts or prompt-books; but 
after a visit to the Vice Begal Lodge in Dublin, where 
we were invited to tea, we decided to do what we 
could, and we gave Joseph Medill Patterson's By- 
Products to an audience of some two hundred invited 
guests. A stage was built for us in historic old 
St. Patrick's Hall, and I am sure we never played 
better. A brief program of songs and recita- 
tions by the company preceded the play, and after 
the felicitations and responses that followed it 
there was dancing in a wonderful ball-room till 
hours much later than most of us were accus- 
tomed to. 

We were greatly disappointed to find that our 
friends, the Irish Players, were still in London, but 
Mr. Lennox Bobinson wired a welcome and directed 
that the Abbey Theatre should be opened for us^ 
and the visit we paid to their professional home was 
most interesting. 

A long time after, on an ** occasion*' one of my 
girls, whose ** Irish Eyes of Blue" had been suspi- 
ciously moist more than once on this wonderful jour- 
ney, ** dropped into poetry" to add to the general 
festivity. Her verses were never intended to be seen 
outside the members of our own dramatic f amily,^ 
and I am quoting from them at the risk of her dis- 
pleasure. She is still a player. 



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TEE HULL'HOUSE PLATERS 259 

I want to hear the Shannon BellR, see Dublin on the lABy, 

Visit ''Mrs. Aberdeen" and dance in marble halls. 
I can shut my eyes and dream, and I'm back there in a 

Glengarriff, dear old Bantry Bay, the roads with vine- 
dad waUs. 

The next day we crossed the Channel All good 
Americans who make the stage a profession go to 
Stratford, and we wished to be no exception. The 
Countess of Warwick had asked us, before we left 
America, to be her guests at Warwick Castle, but 
before we reached there, I received a letter telling of 
the serious illness of her husband, and of her inabil- 
ity to meet us, but adding that the Castle would be 
opened and that we should be shown everything we 
desired to see. We were very sorry to miss the 
pleasure of meeting Lady Warwick, but we had a 
long lovely day on the grounds and in the Castle, 
mihurried and undisturbed, exploring far beyond the 
limits of the regular tourists, who, fortunately for 
us, were not present to annoy, for this was Sunday 
when the general public is not admitted. 

Five wonderful crowded days in London followed. 
Surely no one ever saw so much before in so short 
a time. We ** dashed about in cabs,^' we visited 
churches and parks, and night found us enjoying 
the delightful plays that were on in London theatres. 
One especially interesting incident of our stay was 
an interview with Granville Barker, who received 
us in his own theatre. He was very cordial and told 
US we might produce **The Voysey Inheritance *' in 
our theatre if we chose, although he added he could 
**see no reason on earth why we should wish to 
do so.'' 

The London engagement of the Irish Players 
closed while we were there and we were greatly 



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260 THE HULL^HOUSE PLATERS 

pleased to have Miss Eithne Magee, the ingenue of 
their company (since their leading lady) join us for 
the remainder of our tour. She fitted admirably into 
our scheme and we parted from her at Dover ten 
days later with regret, after voting her a lifelong 
member of our dramatic family. 

And then came five exciting days in Paris, with no 
one ever weary and the interest never flagging. Two 
days at Amsterdam, one at The Hagae, then Ant- 
werp and then — it was all over. On the last ni^t I 
sat very late with my young people around a table 
in a little cafe near the CathedraL They sang all 
the songs they knew and we wished with all our 
hearts that we might come again and see it all once 
more. But war is cruel and very long — and alas- 
Antwerp can never be the same again. 

We worked very diligently in the autumn of 1913, 
for we had a debt of six hundred dollars to i>ay, but 
January saw us clear of this, and the six months 
after that were uneventfuL In October, 1914, we 
re-organized, a step made necessary by natural 
changes which time had brought about. Two mem- 
bers of the group left us for the professional stage, 
and one found employment in another city. It then 
seemed best to set aside the old rule limiting the 
company to fourteen and to bring in a number of 
young people who had long been on our waiting list 
With the new blood thus added we found fresh in- 
spiration, and it is said the best year's record we 
have ever made is that of the last one just closed. 
We were so fortunate as to secure four short plays 
by Chicago authors for our final production in June, 
three of which were entirely new. The four per- 
formances, which we gave of these plays, were no- 
tably successful and we hope other opportunities to 
present works by American authors will be afforded 



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THE HULL-HOUSE PLATERS 261 

us. Visits from Cyril Maude, Miss Elsie Ferguson 
and other professional players brightened up the 
year, and their words of encouragement helped us 
over the inevitable hard places. 

The season of 1915-16 began in November with 
four performances of Rutherford and Son by Githa 
Sowerby, which Mr. Winthrop Ames generously re- 
leased to us for production in our own theatre. This 
play we enjoyed immensely. The rugged strength 
of the characters appealed to us and the interpre- 
tation we gave was warmly commended. Early in 
February we revived The Pillars of Society, first 
produced in 1905. It was encouraging to note the 
changed standards of the company since those early 
days. The improved ** study'*; the facility with 
** business '^ and the reading, which won the approval 
of a severe Norwegian critic, brought joy to the 
heart of the director, who sometimes, in discouraged 
moments, confesses to wondering **if it really is 
worthwhile.*' 

In April of the present year we presented an 
evening of comedy, and we hope to secure for our 
final production in June four short plays by Amer- 
ican authors. One has already been chosen and many 
others we hope will be submitted before we really 
begin work. 

I have tried to tell the story of our fourteen years 
of existence as simply as possible. We have fallen 
short in many things, but we have succeeded in more, 
and we have loved our work all the time. Failures 
have been but a temporary drawback, and we have 
used adverse criticism as an incentive to better 
things. We have gained our chief following by pre- 
senting plays which the commercial theatre is apt to 
overlook, but which a certain group in every com- 
munity really desires to see. What we have accom- 



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262 THE HULL'HOUSE PLATERS 

plished, I am oonvinoed any amateur oompany can 
do with equal zeal and patience, and there is to be 
f onnd, both for teacher and pupils, infinite pleasure 
in the doing. It means hard woik, but nothing is 
ever gained by dilettante methods, and the lessons 
of united effort, the added culture, and the interest 
in the best dramatic literature that such an organi- 
zation can arouse in any community makes the strug- 
gle a valuable social contribution. More amateurs 
doing better work might help to bring back what we 
love to call the "palmy days of the theatre'' wh» 
the "play'' really was the thing, and the onmipres- 
ent "movie" had not won so much affection from tiie 
American public. 

lULVRk DaINTT PBI4HAM. 



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COMMON SENSE AND PLAT-WBITING. 

The Technique of Play Writing, by Charlton Andrews: 
Intradnction by J. Berg Esenwein (The Writer's 
Library). The Home Correspondence School, Spring- 
field, Mass., 1915. 

To the writing of plays there is no royal road. He 
who would traverse the way of Shakspere and of 
Ibsen must be prepared, however well endowed he 
may be, not alone for intensive effort, but for recur- 
ring faintness of heart and even for failure. Per- 
haps it was this that saved Smollett for the novel 
and Stevenson for the romance. The one question 
is. How may the venturer attain to his maximum 
of expertness with the minimum of waste t For 
Shakspere and Ibsen and Pinero practice, sometimes 
in acting, sometimes in writing, aided in attaining 
the goaL For our would-be playwrights Mr. An- 
drews has attempted to provide a more comfortable 
way. But no way can be aught but arduous. This 
is the protection of the public. 

Mr. Andrews's Technique of Play writing embod- 
ies some twenty lessons in the handling of dramatic 
material After an author's foreword, an introduc- 
tion on the modem play by Dr. Esenwein, and a 
glossary, Mr. Andrews begins his book proper with 
some words upon the play and its writer, and then 
in his second chapter proceeds to the theme. Chap- 
ter ni deals with the elements, Chapter IV with the 
plot and some of its fundamentals. Chapter XI with 
devices and conventions, and so on. In the appen- 
dices are included a specimen scenario, specimen 
pages of the manuscripts of plays, which are repro- 

263 



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264 COMMON SENSE AND PLATWRITING 

duced in two colors, and certain lists of plays and 
helpfnl books. In short, the effort is made to cover 
both theory and practice, but always with that em- 
phasis upon the writing of the drama whi(^ is its 
due. 

In all this the spirit is admirable. About no form 
of writing can one less afford to dogmatize than 
about the drama. The chief fault which a student 
or a teacher with a particle of historical perspective 
will find with the rigid and impeccable Freytag, Mr. 
Price, and even the somewhat timid Miss Wood- 
bridge is the ex-cathedra attitude. Nor is Mr. Wil- 
liam Archer, ever urbane, wholly free from a sus- 
picion of it. Here, during what Mr. Andrews calls 
our ** *open season' for radicals fond of gunning for 
dramatic technique'' he wings his first bird. The 
art of the drama is not a matter of rule and line. It 
stands fixed upon principles which, however firm 
and (perhaps) eternal, suffer in succeeding genera- 
tions endless i>ermutation8 and combinations. Yet 
.grasped, mastered, bent to the will of the dramatist 
these principles must be, if the play is to ** march." 
After all is said, that is the only test of any drama. 
As Sir Arthur Piaero put it, a play must tell a story 
in dialogue * * in sudi sldlf ully devised form and order 
as shall, within the limits of an ordinary theatrical 
representation, give rise to the greatest possible 
amount of that peculiar kind of emotional effect, the 
production of which is the one great function of the 
theatre. ' ' Those * * high brows ' ' — ^I quote the phrase 
from the New York Times — ^whom Professor Mat- 
thews justly attacks and those i)ersons who per- 
sist in seeiQg in Hauptmann's Weavers not only a 
great thesis but a great play, would do well to take 
to heart the wisdom and the insight of Sir Arthur. 

That Mr. Andrews stands, as it were, baffled when 



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COMMON SENSE AND PLATWRITING 265 

he tnms to the problem of the genesis of a play is a 
sign not of weakness but of strength and perspic- 
acity. No one knows how this or that dramatist 
first conceived his material Indeed, it is unlikely 
that the dramatist himself could trace with any help- 
ful accuracy the growth of the idea within his brain. 
More than one have tried; far more than one have 
failed. If any could, his experience would be of 
small value to the next learner, except to demon- 
strate the futility of formulae in play-writing. Per- 
haps this proof, this candid introspective admission, 
would give the would-be dramatist the courage to 
attempt the working out of his own salvation, if that 
salvation were to be his ultimate portion. 

It is in a way unfortunate that Mr. Andrews finds 
it necessary to illustrate the growth of a dramatic 
idea by beginning with a theme and, relatively, to 
slight starting with an incident. The futility of 
beginning with a theme is amply demonstrated by 
the readiness with which Wordsworth's **The world 
is too mudi with us'' becomes unrecognizable as Mr. 
Andrews 's own ideas for a play grows complex. The 
truth is that good ideas for plays are bom and not 
made; it is only in training that the machined prod- 
uct may be of value. 

It is not unlikely that the genesis of a play runs 
something like this. In the mind of the true dram- 
atist there exists a continual dramatic ferment. 
From time to time a particle nucleates, and to it 
attach other particles, then still others which for the 
moment may seem unrelated. This constitutes the 
first, the unconscious stage. The second is conscious. 
The dramatist, his mind controlled by the art he has 
learned, proceeds, like a sculptor at work upon a 
sketch, to shape and mould, to add and take away, 
till before he or, less still, any one else, is aware, his 



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266 COMMON SENSE AND PLATWRITING 

play has grown to the point at which he is ready to 
write, and the theme has emerged not wholly because 
of the dramatist, but a little in spite of hiuL 

When the playwright has i>assed this second stage, 
he should be helped by Mr. Andrews's book. It is 
nothing if it is not practical — a hateful word for a 
paramount quality. The chapter on the making of 
scenarios and other mechanical processes, accom- 
panied by a specimen scenario of Bostand's Cyramo 
— a skilful bit of work as regards ** action words" — 
and the chapter on self-criticism are in possibility of 
actual use second only to that on placing the play. 
What of the book Mr. Andrews has written seeniB 
sound. One may quarrel at times with sentences 
left unformed, but the style has ease if not grace. 
On the other hand, one wishes one mi^t say as much 
for Dr. Esenwein's questions and exercises. These 
are often too glib to be invitiag and on the whole 
they leave one the impression of being hard and fast, 
machiae-made. Yet considering Dr. Esenwein 's suc- 
cess in teaching the short story, one hardly dares 
doubt that with a certain type of student they will 
succeed. 

If more of our playwrights had studied Mr. An- 
drews 's book, his prayer for the dramatic future of 
this country might seem nearer an answer. 

HOWABD J. SaVAGB. 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS AET 




HE thoughtful exposition of the 
** movies'' in their social relation to the 
culture of the masses, which was re- 
cently published in The Atlantic Monthly, 
is essentially sound, provided that the 
reader assumes the impossibility of de- 
velopment in the art of the oinemato- 
^aphu Judging the cinematograph by what it is 
today, the outlook is discouraging. But a little ac- 
quaintance with the ideals of the cinematograph as 
it might be, and as certain Continental regisseurs 
dream of transforming it, will reveal the wildest 
possibilities of artistic expression in its future devel- 
opment, and a democratic extension of noble imagi- 
native influence which it is most difficult to measure. 
The wonderful popularity enjoyed by the cine- 
matograph during the last decade has been for a 
long time a subject of eager discussion in those 
circles which have the interests of the theatre at 
heart. The various groups of art-workers connected 
with the theatre — ^the dramatists, the actors, and the 
artists — ^are directly involved in the problem, and 
it is interesting to note how different has been the 
attitude revealed toward it by each of these sections. 
The artists, perhaps the most cultured of these three 
groups from the standpoint of art, have simply 
ignored the cinematograph, regarding it as some- 
thing so crude and inartistic as to be unworthy of 
serious notice. It is true that a few genuine experi- 
ments have been made in this direction, but for sev- 
eral reasons, chiefly because the artists failed to 

267 



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268 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

comprehend the real nature of their mediumy they 
have all proved a complete f ailnre. 

The attitude of most actors has been madi more 
condescending. Those actors who have generalfy 
concerned themselves very little with matters of art, 
accepted the cinematograph with the docile humility 
accorded to all things in the natural order. They 
transferred to the new invention whatever knowl- 
edge of drama they had gained on the legitimate 
stage, and supplied only one new feature : extreme 
exaggeration in mimicry and action, which they held 
to be the chief peculiarity of moving pictures. On 
the other hand, the more advanced members of the 
theatrical profession, who have been really anxious 
to establish on the stage the principles of vital art, 
however mudi they may have differed in their inter- 
pretation of them, at once realized the danger whidi 
threatened the drama from the encroachment of 
the modem cinematograph theatres, and did not 
hesitate to proclaim a most resolute opposition in 
an endeavor to protect their art from being con- 
taminated by this vulgar ^^mechanical" device. Thus 
we see large sections of the community, for whom 
art is an object of vital faith, rejecting the dne- 
matograph as a medium devoid of any artistic quali- 
ties. But it would be wrong to infer that it has 
always lacked faithful champions. Strange as it 
may seem, these have come from the group which 
is furthest removed from the actual problems of 
the theatre — ^the dramatists. As might be expected, 
the only fault that the litterateurs were able to 
detect in moving pictures was in the plot, and so 
they set themselves the task of remedying it. Witii 
enviable ease, they began to pour out elaborate 
philosophical dramas, mystery plays, tragedies, "lit- 
erary" melodramas, and what not, in order to d^n- 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH A8 ART 269 

onstrate what artistio possibilities have been lying 
dormant in the neglected and abnsed cinematograph. 
Once they found that the theatre was no longer held 
in popular esteem, they had no compunction in erect- 
ing their rostrum on the picture-screen, the more 
so as they perceived in it the fuMbnent of two 
objects: the popularization of the drama and the 
elevation of moving pictures to a higher artistic 
leveL We need only mention such names as Gabriele 
D'Annunzio and Leonid Andreyev to show what 
resolute and self-confident arch-priests of literature 
have undertaken the task of reforming the moving 
picture play. But though their attempts have raised 
a host of arguments and controversies among all 
who are interested in the theatre, there can be little 
doubt that failure must be the inevitable result of 
tiieir efforts. Their defence of the pictures is as 
inherently fallacious as the opposition of artists and 
actors, since both are the outcome of a complete 
failure to understand the peculiar nature of the 
cinematograph as a medium of art If the dramat- 
ists* defence leaves us entirely unmoved, since it 
comes from virtual outsiders, we cannot but deplore 
the opposition of those who should be the first and 
foremost exponents of the new art. For there is an 
artistic future for the cinematograph, a future as 
great as any form of artistic drama can hope to 
attain. We may ignore the criticisms of those who 
condemn as utterly vulgar all moving pictures, pho- 
tographs, and gramophones, as well as most other 
products of our resourceful mechanical genius. 
These well-intentioned dilettantes are only victims 
of prevailing artistic conventions, and have no stand- 
ard of their own by which they may discriminate 
between what is art and what is not. The future of 
the cinematograph does not rest with them. It de- 



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270 TEE CINEMATOGRAPH A8 ART 

-pends upon those enlightened and liberal lovers ot 
art who can see beyond the conventions of tiie 
moment, who possess a range of symi>athies whicli 
is already wide enough to embrace sudi divergent 
revelations as we find in the static art of Egypt, tiie 
decorativeness of Eastern art, and the rudimentaiy 
work of Cezanne and Matisse, or to refer strictly to 
the domain of drama, the medisBval booth, the puppet 
show, and the productions of Mr. E. Gordon Craig. 
Theirs is the task of creating the canons and stand- 
ards, of shaping the conventions of cinematograplue 
art, and of building up a tradition which will pass, 
in due course, through the i)eriod when it is merdy 
fashionable, and attain finally the position of an 
acknowledged medium for artistic expression^ 

It is with the object of securing a more sympa- 
thetic attitude for this discredited medium that I 
venture, however conscious of the heresy, to advance 
a plea for the cinematograph as a vehicle of genuine 
art-expression. 

n 

Much has been said in the press about the issues 
involved in the problem of moving pictures: their 
special appeal to the masses; their competition with 
the theatre; whether they are to supersede the lat- 
ter, or whetiier they are doomed to be merely a tran- 
sient fashion and eventually disappear; th^ artistic 
crudity; that is to say, whether liiey are a reversal 
to the methods of the booth, and whether they indi- 
cate the birth of a new democratic art; and many 
other similar questions. With these issues we shall 
not concern ourselves at present. Without under- 
rating their interest and importance, we hold tiiat 
they overlook the most essential factor of the prob- 
lem : the peculiar nature of the medium whidi alone 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 271 

should form the basis of its possible artistic appli- 
cation. Before we are able to enter npon a discus- 
sion of this problem, a nmnber of deep-rooted 
popular misconceptions mnst be cleared away. I 
almost despair of my task, for in the sphere of ideas, 
as in that of biology, the lowest forms are the most 
tenacious of life. 

One of the critic's first duties is discrimination. 
Tet the criticisms hurled so liberally from all sides 
at the cinematograph have been little distinguished 
by this character. Two things which are entirely 
distinct have been persistently confused by aU 
critics: the cinematograph as a medium, and the 
cinematograph theatre as we know it at the present 
time. That the second is below criticism — ^indeed, 
something coarse, crude, and altogether ugly — can 
be easily and unreservedly admitted. But to deduce 
from tins fact the impossibility of an artistic cine- 
matograph betrays a lack of logic and imagination. 
It is evident, in the first place, that many drawbacks 
of the modem moving-picture play are in no way 
connected with the cinematograph as a peculiar 
medium of dramatic expression. For example, take 
the vulgar realism of moving pictures about which 
we hear so many complaints. Is it a peculiar feature 
of the cinematograph t The students of the theatre 
will agree that naturalism as vulgar as this ruled 
the legitimate stage long before the cinematograph 
became a competitor. The pictures simply followed 
along the beaten track, bringing to logical absurdity 
what the legitimate drama, not endowed with the 
infinite resourcefulness of its competitor, could only 
pursue half way. It is unnecessary to dwell upon the 
many similar drawbacks of the cinematograph. We 
are not so much concerned with what it actually is 
as with what it might be. The problem that really 



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272 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

matters may be stated in the following words: Is 
the cinematograph a medinm capable of artistic 
achievement in the two fields that make up the art 
of the stage— the dramatic field and the pictorial 
field t The answer to this question necessarily in- 
volves discussing the vexed question of mecdiaiiical 
art. However reluctant I may be to toudi upon this 
controversy, I am unable to avoid it altogether. So 
I bow before the inevitable, and shall try to disprae 
of it in the briefest possible manner. 

It is often contended that automatic mechanism 
can never attain to anytidng like artistic perfection, 
and that consequently there is no artistic future for 
the cinematograph. 

It is obvious that the whole argument stands or 
falls with the definition of ^'mechanism.'' But this 
definition is never stated in anything like exact 
terms. That there are no absolutely automatic 
mechanisms hardly needs to be pointed out. All 
mechanisms must be controlled by human power at 
one moment or another, and, what is stiU more impor- 
tant, they are all products of human intelligence. 
Whatever forces may be involved in their operation 
are brought together by the action of human thought 
compressed and wound up like a spring, and consti- 
tuting their actual prime mover throughout the whole 
process of their operation. Thus the problem is 
reduced to defining the degree of independence from 
immediate human control and power which medi- 
anism can possess. This is so indeterminate that 
we see similar kinds of action styled mechanical in 
one case, and highly individual in another. Who will 
doubt, for instance, that the action of an organ 
played at a concert is individual, and that of a loco- 
motive engine mechanical t Yet it cannot be disputed 
that the second requires as much skill and personal 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 273 

control as the first. The point is not whether these 
operations are art or are not art, but whether they 
are mechanical or non-mechanicaL I maintain that 
there is no real distinction between the one and the 
other, and that both may serve artistic ends if prop- 
erly utilized* 

One more example of the prevailing confusion of 
thought on this subject: the gramophone is admit- 
tedly a mechanical contrivance and so is the tele- 
phone ; yet no one listening to the opera tiirough the 
telephone ever says that the music he hears is a 
mechanical production. The sole difference, how- 
ever, that exists between this music and its record 
on the gramophone, is that the gramophone fixes only 
one stage of the process — ^the vibrations of the tele- 
phone membrane — and allows one to * * switch on ' ' the 
flow of sound at will, while the telephone receives 
and transmits the sound in one continuous process. 

These two illustrations not only show the vague 
popular use of the term ^^ mechanical,'' but also the 
elements that go to make up the significance of this 
term. They are three: complexity of mechanism, 
the number of intermediate stages, and the extent 
of time between the application of human power and 
the appearance of the effect. It is only necessary 
to rid the mind of the prejudice for a moment to be 
able to see that not a single one of these elements 
is in any way mcompatible with artistic work and 
achievement And if at the present time mechanical 
methods of production under the capitalistic system 
have served to destroy whatever artistic feeling the 
producer may have had, this does not militate 
against the mechanical methods as such, but rather 
against the way they are used in our time. 



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274 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

m 

Now let us examine the problem itself. First of 
all, let us endeavor to realize the peculiar nature of 
the cinema drama, and then we shall be able to see 
how far this ^^medianical" medium lends itself to 
artistic expression. 

One of the most startling facts about cinemato- 
graph productions is that the actors who play for 
these pictures are all members of the legitimate dra- 
matic profession. Their attainments on the theatre 
stage need not be discussed in this iostance, but it 
seems quite apparent that of cinema acting they 
understand very little indeed. The cinema drama 
raises some of the most fundamental problems of 
art But what do they know about themt Are they 
aware that the cinematograph play is the most ab- 
stract form of the pantomime t Do they realize that 
if there is any stage on which the laws of movement 
should reign supreme, it is the ciaematograph stage f 
If they did, they would not have monopolized the 
cinematograph play, but would have left it to 
dancers, clowns, and acrobats who do know some- 
thing about the laws of movement By no means do 
I presume to say that dancers and clowns are neces- 
siurily artists. But movement is their natural ele- 
ment and it is also movement that constitutes the 
real nature of the cinematograph. The patrons and 
devotees of present-day pictures may boast of their 
'^ wonderful realistic effects,'' but this popular con- 
ception only betrays a complete failure to grasp one 
salient fact: viewed from tiie standpoint of the 
drama, just as from many other standpoints of which 
more will be said later on, the cinematograph is 
essentially and preeminently dynamic It is neces- 
sary at this point to realize tiie effect of picture plays 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 275 

if this principle of pure movement were recognized 
throughout Boiling eyes and wild gesticiUation 
would be abolished. Sham * * natural' ' talking would 
give place to mimicry and gesture, free and eloquent. 
The movements of the actors would no longer imi- 
tate actual life, but would synthetically express it 
in the peculiar laws of rhythmic motion. Panto- 
mimes, harlequinades, ballets would take the place 
of the present melodramas and comical pictures^ 
thus giving adequate expression to the wordless 
nature of tiie medium. Would it be possible, then, 
to argue that there is no art in the cinematograph? 
So far as the dramatic aspect is concerned, this at 
any rate would constitute a most decisive step in the 
direction of art. And other advances would imme- 
diately follow, once the fundamental prindple waB 
firmly establi^ed. 

It is often conJ;ended that the presence in bodily 
form of the actor in the play is the sine qua non 
of artistic drama. This view is held alike by those 
who believe in realism on the stage and by those who 
do not The attitude of the latter is particularly 
drolL After disposing of all the realistic mummery, 
they cling to the last citadel of the ''true-to-nature'' 
gospel of art, the bodily shell of the actor. Why, is it 
not his personality that really matters t And is that 
expressed only in the frail physical body of the 
actor t To the spectator of some artistic culture it is 
in a sense irrelevant whether the acting on the stage 
is performed by living persons, by doUs, or by cine- 
matograph shadows. The effect in each case must 
necessarily be different, but only in so far as the 
artistic properties of each of these media of drama 
differ from one another. Their absolute artistic 
value remains unaffected by their being animate or 
inanimate. In fact, it is oi>en to argument, whether 



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276 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

man is at all suitable as a medium of dramatic art, 
as readers of Mr. E. Gordon Craig already know. 
But we need not go so far. In the case of fiinftmA 
drama^ we do not disi>ense with the actor. We dis- 
pense only with his body. Perhaps those who can- 
not reconcile themselves to this fact will find comfort 
in reflecting upon the time when poets were gradu- 
ally led to recognize that singing a poem in person 
is not the only way of rendering the artistic beauties 
of the composition. In our age of reduplication, to 
the list of arts which already resort to this process 
(poetry, music, lithography, etching), we now add 
the sacred art of the theatre. It is a process of 
natural development, and it would be sheer stu- 
pidity on our part if we continued to ignore it or 
to notice only its outward features. Just as it did 
not degrade the profession of the painter when he 
realized the artistic possibilities of lithography, so 
it will not degrade the modem actor if he makes full 
use of the new mcfdium which human ingenuity has 
placed at his command. The real and the only prob- 
lem for him is to find out what actually constituted 
the peculiar properties of the medium and how these 
properties should be managed to achieve the highest 
artistic effect The fact that the problem can be 
solved only by practice and experiment and that 
present-day cinematograph practice has produced 
in the artistic sense some appalling results, must not 
be taken as proof of the inartistic nature of the 
medium itself. The truth of this statement has been 
shown above as applied to the playing of actors. It 
will be seen that it is equally true applied to the 
pictorial element of stage production. 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 277 

IV 

The peculiar optical effects of the cinematograph 
are a resultant of two processes : the photographic 
process of making the film, and the process of pro- 
jecting the film on the screen. 

What artistic possibilities do these processes 
possess t 

There is no need to enter in this instance upon a 
discussion of photography as art. Its shortcomings 
as a medium and the triteness of the average photo- 
graphic work can hardly be disputed. But only 
narrow prejudice can deny it any artistic quality 
whatever. The magnificent work so often found at 
various photographic exhibitions proves most con- 
clusively that photography and art are not so incom- 
patible as some of our purists would like us to 
believe. 

The same is the case with cinema photography. 
So long as it remains in the hands of mere operators 
and chemists, so long will its pictorial value be on a 
par with the artistic conceptions held by these crafts- 
men. And this can hardly be wondered at, seeing 
that the nature of the new medium, to be properly 
imderstood, requires such a culture of mind as is 
seldom met with even amongst professional expo- 
nents of art 

The greatest question it raises is that of the 
psychological significance pertaining to its various 
dramatic and pictorial forms. 

One important fact must be stated at the outset. 
The cinematograph has at its conmiand two distinct 
ways of producing plays : the two-dimensional pro- 
duction*on the ordinary screen, and the three-dimen- 
sional production by means of different stereoscopic 
devices and of the kineplastikon. Too much stress 



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278 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

cannot be laid upon this distinction. Its importance 
is enormous, since in the two forms of space — of 
two, and of tliree dimensions — we obtain two aspects 
of the world which are opposed to each other in their 
very elements. Without going deeply into the philo- 
sophical and psychological nature of these forms of 
space, it may be said that the first symbolizes and 
incarnates the principles of continuity, cosmic unity, 
spontaneity, pure sentiment and Mndred psychic 
experiences, whilst the second stands for differenti- 
ation, individuality, dear-consciousness, and the like, 
thus forming two distinct worlds: one monistic, 
fused into one integral whole, and the other ato- 
mistic, broken into numberless mutually opposed 
imits. The same two principles obtain in the theatre. 
The staging in one plane produces an effect of dis- 
solving the world, when reproduced in the mind of 
the audience. It destroys the barrier between the 
stage and the spectator, turning the play from a 
mere spectacle into an actual incident in the life of 
the audience, an incident which, though experienced 
passively, enters into the soul of the spectator as 
an integral element of lus being. Such, for instance, 
is the effect of some of Maurice Maeterlinck's relig- 
ious plays when staged in one plane. This method 
may be called subjective-monistic Its coxmterpart 
is the objective-monistic method, which again de- 
stroys the barrier between the stage and the audi- 
ence, but this time by transporting the spectator on 
to the stage and making him actively participate in 
the play. The early forms of the Greek drama and 
the mediaeval mystery plays may be quoted here as 
examples of this method, though the first also con- 
tains considerable elements of subjectivity. 

The other way of apprehending the universe is 
based on the consciousness of all its component parts 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 279 

or atoms — on the opposition of self and non-self. 
The world acquires an atomistic aspect. The self- 
affirming personality always feels its aloofness from 
the ambience. By a process of active contemplation 
it may embrace and absorb this encompassing world, 
but it never fuses into it. In the theatre this sover- 
eignty of self -affirming personality finds its expres- 
sion, on the one hand, in the abstractly sculpturesque 
stagings of Mr. E. Gordon Craig, which we may 
rightly call subjective-atomistic. These definitions 
may appear somewhat obscure, but they show the 
problems of stciging which obtrude in the cinemato- 
£p:aph, determining the pictorial representation. The 
cinematograph possesses a greater command of 
space than the legitimate stage, or than painting on 
flat surfaces. It is able, and therefore is obliged, to 
discriminate between the diflferent methods of pic- 
torial presentment. Unlike the others, it can afford 
to be logical But it would only gain in effect and 
'would reveal the inner monistic nature of the two- 
dimensional space if it were more consistent and 
eliminated every atom of natural relief. Play of 
lines and colors is all that is required on the flat 
screen, and if properties of the medium have, as 
everybody believes nowadays, any importance in the 
achievement of artistic effect, then it is obvious that 
the cinematograph can only gain by consistent appli- 
cation of the principle of two-dimensional space to 
pictures on the ordinary screen. 

On the other hand, to represent the atomistic world 
as distinct from the self-conscious personality, the 
method of three-dimensional staging affords both the 
actor and the pictorial artist unlimited scope for 
new and altogether artistic achievements. 

The stagings of Mr. E. Gordon Craig, for instance, 
imfetter and expand the stage. They are not thc- 



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280 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

atrical in the narrow sense of the word. They pur- 
port to create on the boards a world of their own, 
one entirely distinct from the stage world, however 
far it may be removed from the realistic world. But 
the stage is only a stage, and the space on it has its 
well-known limitations. The case with the stereo- 
scopic cinematograph is different. Its command of 
space is practically boundless. It can create another 
world and place it before the eyes of tHe audience to 
watch it with admiration, sympathy, or disdain. The 
stereoscopic cinematograph in the hands of real 
artists could raise even realistic drama (in its word- 
less form, of course) to its proper position, repre- 
senting the world stated objectively and watched 
from outside. 

As to the pictorial artist, both the plane and the 
stereoscopic moving picture open before him a new 
field for artistic development. It would be impos- 
sible at the present stage of the cinematograph's 
development to discuss in detail the multifarious 
problems arising out of the application of this new 
process. Only practical experience could give sat- 
isfactory answers to many of these questions. But 
there are some general features of the cinema- 
pictorial process, whidi already allow of analysis 
and discussion. 

The most important of them is the dynamic char- 
acter of the cinematograph. In addition to the third 
dimension whidi the cinematograph provides by 
stereoscopic projection, it possesses yet another co- 
ordinate — ^time. How does this element enter into 
the pictorial and plastic arts! We know the Egyp- 
tians answered this question by discarding the no- 
tion itself. Instead of transient time they imparted 
to their immovable, frigid productions a spirit of 
eternity. The Greeks, the artists of the Renaissance 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 281 

and most modem artists try to give the impression 
of movement by arranging the elements of a picture 
or a statue in such a way that the eye must travel 
over the production. 

Now the cinematograph is the first medium by 
which one can deal with time fairly and squarely 
without recourse to the tricks of the cubist or futur- 
ist. Is that not in itself a sufficient reason why 
artists should seize this unique opportunity! 

Following the distinction stated above, we shall 
have two branches of this mobile art: the flat screen 
cinematograph (the realm of the flat-surface artist), 
and the stereoscopic cinematograph (the realm of 
the sculptor who thinks in form and color). At 
present, the only indications of this future mobile 
art are found in the best theatrical productions. I 
may point out as examples the exquisite stagings 
of Bussian ballets by Bakst, Anisf eld, and Golovin, 
and their designs for costumes in particular, since 
in the varying combinations of lines and colors on 
the background of the scenery the basis of the mo- 
bile art is present implicitly. 



It is necessary at this point, in the light of the 
foregoing theories, to consider what position the 
artist will occupy in future cinematograph produc- 
tions. In the stereoscopic cinematograph he has al- 
ready at his command nearly all that he can desire. 
It is true that the colors of Uf e are yet wanting, but 
an artist can obtain a real color-tone from black 
and white. Moreover he can tone the film just as 
he pleases, so that after all he is not entirely de- 
prived of color. Otherwise the stereoscopic cinema 
photography leaves hardly anything to be desired. 
It gives a facsimile reproductiqn, color excepted, of 



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282 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

the actual scene. If the legitimate stage affords 
scope for the application of artistic talents, the 
stereoscopic cinematograph has the additional ad- 
vantage of a much greater command of space than 
the stage. 

The problems of photography in the one-plane 
cinematograph are somewhat different. They are 
akin to those met with in other arts dealing with the 
flat surface; on the other hand, they are naturally 
distinguished from them in so far as they all depend 
on the mobile conditions of the cinematograph. The 
influence of these conditions on other artistic effects 
can be judged from the fact that in moving pictures, 
we are seldom able to fix our attention on one given 
position for any considerable length of time. This 
being so, the criteria of art applied to moving pic- 
tures must be obviously different from those applied 
to paintings or lithographs. The laws of composi- 
tion cannot possibly be the same. What they are 
I shall not here attempt to define, but an artist who 
took up the cinematograph would find that such laws 
do exist and, gradually, by experiment and prac- 
tice, he would subject them to his control At pres- 
ent, our ideas on mobile composition are so unde- 
veloped and so crude that posterity will hardly be 
able to believe that they were ever held. It is only 
necessary to remind ourselves of the revolution 
started in this field by Jacques-Dalcroze with his 
rhythmic gymnastics. It is still open to an artist to 
give it a worthy counterpart in fixing it on the film. 
In this connection the attempts made by Mr. A. Wal- 
lace Bimington in England, and by A. Scriabin, the 
well-known composer, in Bussia, to create a new 
art of color-music are of interest. Mr. Bimington 
has already given us a detailed exposition of his 
theory and a description of the color-organ, the in- 



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THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 283 

stmineBt he specially invented for this purpose. 
There can be little doubt that this new form of art 
"will have a great future, and that in one way or an- 
other it will become one of the most essential com- 
ponents of the artistic cinematograph. 

The second cinema photographic problem is akin 
to the question of ordinary photographic prints. 
Line drawing being excluded by the nature of pho- 
tography as we at present know it, the problem is 
how to achieve the best results with a medium sim- 
ilar in character to the wash. The problem lies not 
80 much with the lighting of models as with the 
production of the film and projection on the screen. 
Greater artistic effect would probably be achieved 
on screens of more solid consistency than those now 
in vogue, on screens of a grained surface, such as a 
white plastered wall would provide. Then the lights 
and shades on the film should give more concen- 
trated, solid, and flat masses, thus obviating unnec- 
essary details, which are often annoyingly conspic- 
uous. The silhouette picture film, which is prac- 
tically unknown, possesses wonderful possibilities. 
For fairy-tales or grotesque and sentimental stories, 
hardly any medium could be more fitting. 

VI 

In conclusion, let me recapitulate the principal 
points. The artistic failure of the modem cinema- 
tograph is due solely to lack of understanding of 
this medium's peculiar properties. It is dynamic 
throughout. Expression of the rhythmically mov- 
ing body must be the only law of the actor, expres- 
sion of rhythmically moving form and color the only 
law of the pictorial artist. 

The actor must cease ignoring the dumb nature 
of the cinematograph in performing ** realistic*' 



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284 THE CINEMATOGRAPH AS ART 

plays. Pantomime and ballet are the only forms 
open to him. He can achieve greatly varying psy- 
chological effects by staging his plays in two or 
three dimensions. The silhouette is the form of act- 
ing where the one-plane principle of staging finds 
its most complete expression. 

The pictorial artist most discriminate between the 
flat-screen and the stereoscopic cinematograph pro- 
jection. With the first, he must try to eliminate all 
relief, to evolve the color value of light and shade, 
and to make the screen as good an artistic medium 
as paper is. With the second, he must solve the 
complicated problems of planes and volumes whidi 
this stereoscopic form of projection places before 
him. In application to both methods he must evolve 
the f ormuke of mobile composition and mobile color. 

So much for the actor and for the artist. 

Above all, however, the cinematograph needs men 
of genius, of deep insight, and of great spiritual 
culture. More than the theatre it is a synthetic form 
of art, as both the dramatic and the pictorial arts 
constitute the basic elements of its nature. To be 
raised from its present state of degradation it re- 
quires men who combine a genius for dramatic and 
pictorial presentation with the deep wisdom of sages. 
It requires that clear-consciousness without which 
there is no real personality and no individual feel- 
ing of the world. 

Art is the revelation of the human spirit in every- 
thing capable of expressing it, conditioned only by 
the nature of the medium used. So the cinemato- 
graph will rise to the level of art when men of great 
intelligence and insight express themselves in forms 
determined by the natural properties of this new 
medium. Everything seems to indicate that we shall 
not have long to wait for this fulfillment. 

AtiWXandeb Baksht. 



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THE UNCHASTENED WOMAN. 

The Unchastened Woman. A play by Louis K. 
Anspacher. Frederic*: A. Stokes Company, 
New York. 

LT not the tradition of the difficulty of 
acting Shakespeare resolve itself 
largely into a question of having some 
standard to measure up to t The aver- 
age Shakespearean audience, even of 
today, has read the play before coming 
to the theatre, or has seen some other 
performance, or at least has heard of other players, 
and how they interpreted such and such characters. 
One goes to the modem play, on the other hand, un- 
prepared to make demands. There is nothing for us 
but to accept, with as good a grace as possible, the 
<$rumbs (by way of interpretation) which are thrown 
to us. Sometimes more is ^ven, sometimes less; 
but with no idea of the play as it came from the 
brain of the author, how is one to judge! For acting 
is not a matter of beauty of form or face, not even 
of gesture and voice, although these things enter 
into it, but of adequate interpretation. Now one 
critic today may be certain that Miss Blue-eyes does 
not know how to act, and that Miss Brown-eyes does ; 
one may favor the shrill and acid, another the low- 
Toiced and sweet; one may deem that much pucker- 
ing of the brow and placing of the finger upon the 
supraorbital nerve denotes great cerebration, an- 
other may hold indistinct enunciation in no way a 

285 



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286 THE UNCHA8TENED WOMAN 

handicap to fame — ^but this is not criticism. I re- 
member hearing Mr. William Henderson some years 
ago give a lecture on Musical Criticism as a Profes- 
sion before the students of the Columbia School of 
Journalism. It was illuminating to note the prepa- 
ration he underwent in order to review in his paper 
the first performance of a new opera by Richard 
Strauss. First, he borrowed the score and studied 
that religiously, then he attended several rehearsals, 
and finally went with pencil well sharpened, I should 
imagine, to attend the opening night. He knew his 
text, he was ready not alone to write of the opera as 
opera in relation to other works of the composer, 
but he was prepared by his knowledge of the art of 
singiag and operatic acting to judge of the individ- 
ual merit of each member of the cast It was sug- 
gestive of the times perhaps quite as much as of the 
man, that Mr. Clayton Hamilton, who followed Mr. 
Henderson in the same series of lectures, when it 
came to the Profession of the Dramatic Critic, should 
have pointed out what made a good play or a bad 
play, but never once with a single reference to the art 
of the actor. That acting is an art in itself to be 
judged separately, whether the play has merit or 
not, apparently seemed of no consequence. What 
an interesting shuffle we should have in our stage 
reputations today if our theatrical critics and audi- 
ences were as well prepared to value virtuosity as 
the critics and audiences of the opera! An opera 
audience — such as we have in New To A — ^is highly 
sophisticated, weighing, testing one performance 
with another; the voice and acting of the soloists, 
the work of the chorus, the nuances of the orchestra, 
the magnetism of the leader, the wealth of scenery 
and costume, all stand in the searching light of com- 
parison, in short, making a conscious demand upon 



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THE UNCHA8TENED WOMAN 287 

every performer, a sthnulating incentive to do good 
i^ork. 

These remarks are suggested by the publication, 
"while it is still on the boards, of Mr. Anspacher's 
play. The Unchastened Woman. It is all too seldom 
that we are given the opportunity to oppose the 
actor's performance with the authority of the author. 
Possibly the managers have done their best to rob 
the playwright of all semblance of authority, but the 
increasing publication of plays is an augury that it 
is coming back. I remember in reading Mr. Percy 
MacKaye's A Thailand Years Ago, published by the 
Drama League, how cheap and tawdry by compari- 
son it made the stage production seem. And in the 
same way, one cannot read the daring, original and 
thoroughly modem play of Mr. Anspacher's with- 
out being forced to realize after all, how inadequate 
a production it has received. One may be permitted 
to wonder if, with the test of the printed play at 
hand, the Playgoing Committee of the New York 
Drama League would still have said: 

^'The production is intelligent and excellent 
throughout The play is especially well cast and 
the acting of a high order.'' 

Would that more playwrights were brave enough 
and idealistic enough to waive the larger monetary 
return of that intolerable hybrid the novelized 
drama, and give us their work in the only possible, 
self-respecting form, the published play! so many 
interesting, indeed fascinating qualities are revealed 
in the reading which are not even to be suspected 
from witnessing it as acted. Not that I mean for a 
minute to imply that Mr. Anspacher has written a 
play that ** reads better than it acts'* — ^not at all — 
but that only by reading the play as it comes undis- 
torted from his hand, can we see all that has been 



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288 THE UNCHASTENED WOMAN 

deliberately left out on the stage. A choms of praise 
has greeted the acting, but here and there a voice 
has arisen against the play: one complains of ''a 
lack of clear intention'' and calls it **an unveracious, 
almost fantastically improbable tale." The Drama 
League Bulletin, quoted above, so full of praise for 
the acting, rebukes the author for the unconvincing 
reconciliation of the Sanburys. Of course the play 
is unconvincing cts it is played. To any thinking 
person it is simply inconceivable that so delightful 
and distinguished a man as Hubert Knollys (acted 
with rare deftness and charm by Mr. fieeves-Smith) 
would have endured so long the shrill, ill-bred and 
hopelessly over-dressed creature of the stage imper- 
sonation. Furthermore, if the leading lady were 
correct in her reading of the part, then the whole 
play was largely much ado about nothing. If the 
Caroline Knollys of the printed play were the crude 
Bohemian whom Miss Stevens visualized for us, if 
she were nothing more than the mere voluptuous 
married flirt, she would never have shrunk from 
scandal and divorce, never have worshiped apx>ear- 
ances (having so flagrantly ignored them in her own 
person), she would never have objected so strenu- 
ously to the society of her husband's mistress — ^in 
short, there would have been no play. The very don 
of the play is the heroine's careful conventionality, 
her adoration of good form, her creed which puts the 
surface above everything, which objects not to im- 
morality but to the appearance of it. The heroine 
that Miss Stevens gives us, on the otiier hand, is a 
kind of leading lady of the Winter Garden, much be- 
tinselled and bedecked, wearing wriggly trains of 
last year's vintage, serpentine scarves and huge 
picture hats at the most inopportune moments, of 
restless manners, impossible gestures, questionable 



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THE UNCHA8TENED WOMAN 289 

"behaviour and an utter, hopeless lack of distinction. 
Certainly it is all as far as possible from the proud 
and dignified leader of New York and Newport, the 
Mrs. Hubert KnoUys of the published play. Utterly 
heartless, vain, and cattish that lady may have been, 
but just the same you may be quite certain, a woman 
more ready to forgive an enemy than commit a social 
gaucherie, and quite as incapable of wearing last 
year's gown as of being generous to a rival 

*^What do we know about the unchastened 
woman f asks a writer in the New York Evening 
Journal, and immediately answers herself by adding 
** Nothing I'' But for this she puts the blame on 
the wrong person. There are a few pages of the 
book that have been cut out of the acted play, which 
would have proved highly illuminating. For in- 
stance, the inquiring lady would have learned that 
Mrs. KnoUys was a woman of forty, married over 
twenty-five years before the opening of the play, and 
having a married daughter. Furthermore the in- 
tegrity of the entire play, and particularly the last 
curtain, suffers from the distortion which follows in 
making Lawrence Sanbury, the young architect, ev- 
erything that the author did not intend him to be;' 
instead of being overpowered merely by the vision 
of success which a wealthy patron holds out to him, 
he seems to be a victim rather of her heau yeux. His 
perfectly natural and sincere cry, **Why, she's old 
enough to be my mother!'' is thrown out to spare 
the lady's feelings, and instead of a manly, broad- 
shouldered, vital young man in love with his wife 
and wanting success as much for her as for himself, 
the management saw fit in its infinite wisdom to 
make him the usual stage picture of the lap dog of 
a fashionable woman. The author describes him as 
a handsome, vital looking man of twenty-five, but 



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290 THE UNCHA8TENED WOMAN 

we see him as an empty-headed boy of no possible 
promise, little, narrow-chested, weak-kneed physio- 
ally and morally, a bom adnlterer if there ever was 
one, not at all tiie kind of man to whom the woman 
of the ^Mangeroos age'* married to the elderly hus- 
band tarns for emotional excitement Now beside 
all this, if the wife of the andiitect, an ^dent, dear- 
sighted, generous sodal woi^er and writer, is turned 
into a mild, coyingly sweet, blue-eyed little girl, 
hopelessly tongue-tied before the unflindiing attacks 
of her dangerous rival, if Emily Madden, Hubert's 
mistress, could never be mistaken for a highly ex- 
ecutive newspaper woman, if indeed furthermore 
we find ourselves sharing his wife's wonder at his 
taste, is it any wonder that some of the characters 
seem somewhat blurred! Indeed the wonder to me 
is that in spite of all this, so much of the author's 
intention did succeed in filtering through! 

For this play of Mr. Anspacher's is distinctly a 
play of character. More than that it is an attempt 
to show the different reactions of varying charac- 
ters to the Truth — ^to break up the white light of 
Truth into its spectrum. Caroline uses the Truth 
unscrupulously as a weapon of offence; the Truth 
makes of her husband a gentle, varnished cynic; it 
blights Emily, makes of Krellin the anarchist a cos- 
mic humorist, the old diarwoman a kindly philoso- 
pher, and leaves Hildegarde, the architect's wife, 
the only one who can stand facing the Truth with- 
out being overwhelmed. It is a play of skillful un- 
windiDg of the strands of good and evil, a play 
wherein the intricate threads of action are separated 
with deft fingers, a play of delicate tones and half 
lights, and subtle gradations. And yet it is given a 
production in sharpest blacks and whites. Just as 
no longer we dub our stage characters ** Venture- 



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THE UNCHA8TENED WOMAN 291 

well,** '^Winwife," ^^Dame Purecraft,*' ''Sneer- 
well,'* ''Puff,** "Surface,** and the like, so the real- 
istic drama of today can not tolerate the simple 
characters that such names would fit. Caroline 
KnoUys has been compared by several reviewers to 
Hedda Gabler. One calls her "a Hedda without a 
background,** but it is surely not the autibor who is 
at fault. Background and atmosphere are of deli- 
cate fabric, and in a production such as I have in- 
timated they simply disappear. Caroline is quite 
as typical a creature of our complex life of today 
as Hedda was of hers. In the less cramped and re- 
stricted life of America, with a fortune in her own 
right, Caroline acts witii far freer rein; she plays 
her game more skillfully, more openly than Hedda. 
But both women are fighting with all the weapons at 
their command the inexorableness of Nature — ^the 
one against maternity, the other quite as vainly 
against old age. 

Very likely the management has given the public 
what it wants. Apparently it dotes on sirens, loves 
to watch an utterly heartless wife steal another 
woman *s husband from under her nose, believes in 
the lapdog lover as a necessary accessory of the 
woman of fashion, more important than well-bred 
manners or clothes ! — ^it revels in bright colors and 
tinsel and satins, even if they do not belong in the 
picture, in sinuous lines, and in what one newspaper 
writer has chastely called "bodices which invite ex- 
plorers.** But the sad thing in all this is that if 
there is any one temptation to be resisted by the 
young author it is the temptation to do what has 
been done before. It is tiie one ideal of the man- 
ager, the one pitfall of the author. The thing that 
has been done, alas! is also the thing most easily 
done I The late Henry James used to insist that 



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292 THE UNCHASTENED WOMAN 

the dramatic form of literature was not open to the 
subtleties which could be expressed in other forms 
of fiction. Was he right! Is it really the literary 
form that is at fault, or the desire of producers and 
actors to seek tiie easiest way! 

Now all this sheds an interesting light upon the 
condition of our stage at the moment. It reveals 
something of what the conscientious playwright must 
endure if he is to have a production. One of them 
confessed to me a few days ago that he is fortunate 
who is able to get sixty per cent of his original in- 
tention * * across. ' ' If we are to be content with play- 
wrights who never go below the surface, whose 
themes are taken from the latest extras on the street, 
and as little digested, not much harm is done. But 
if we are to hope for a generation of playwrights 
who wish to save their souls by setting down **The 
very age and body of the time'' in all honesty as 
they see it, writers who have given thought to Life 
before they have begun to think of royalties, then it 
is very serious indeed. As Mr. Walter Prichard 
Eaton very truly has said (but I cannot forgive him 
for saying that Emily Stevens rose superbly to her 
opportunity), ^* We shall never have first-rate drama 
until we have first-rate minds writing for the stage. *' 

Will first-rate minds be encouraged to write for 
the stage if actresses not only are to be permitted 
to distort and twist the author's meaning at will, 
but are to be applauded for so doing t If no leading 
lady is to be over twenty-five, if the subtle skeins of 
action, the delicate shades of character, the conflict- 
ing motives which make the joy of great fiction, are 
to be sacrificed to those less subtle and more under- 
standable ones, if the contradictory impulses of the 
sophisticated gentlewoman are to be cheapened into 
the exaggerated lure of a siren, if the emotions of 



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THE UNCHASTENED WOMAN 293 

a Caroline KnoUys are to be changed into the sim- 
pler ones of the insolent rake, if the delicate machi- 
nations of a female Machiavelli are to be translated 
into the crude hnsband-stealing of a Cleopatra, then 
the writer of serious drama would do well, like Ibsen, 
to depend upon the printed page for his vindication* 

Ankib Nathan Mbyxb. 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 

A Dramatic Sketch by Anton Chekhov 

Translated from the Bnssian Original by David A 
Modell,A.M. 

Thb Ghabaotebs 

TiKHOK Yevbtigneev, keeper of a tavern on the high- 
way. 
SsMioN Seboeevitoh Bobtsot, a ruined Umdowner. 
Mabia Ybgobovka, his wife. 
Sawa, a wandering old penitent. 
Nazabovna ") •« 

Fedia, a transient workman. 

Ybgob Mebik, a tramp. 

KuzMA, a passer-hy. 

A postman. 

IJLasul Yegobovka's driver. 

Pilgrims, merchants, travellers, and others. 

The action takes place in a province of South 
Russia. The stage represents Tikhon^s tavern. To 
the right is the bar, with shelves holding bottles. 
Beyond is a door leading outside. Over the door- 
way, on the outside, hangs a red, greasy little lan- 
tern. The floor and the benches lining the waUs are 
entirely taken up by pilgrims and other travellers. 
Many, for lack of room, sleep in a sitting posture. 
It is late (U night. As the curtain goes up, thunder 
is heard and lightning is seen through the doorway. 

294 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 295 

TiKHON is behind the bar. On one of the benches 
lounges Fbdia playing a harmonica. Near him sits 
BoBTSOT dressed in threadbare summer clothes. On 
the floor, by the benches, lie Sayva, Nazaboyna, and 
Ybfimovna. 

Yefimovna. [To Nazaboyna.] Shake the old man 
there, Mdtushka.^ He seems to want to give np his 
sonl to God. 

Nazabovna. [Lifting from the wanderer's face 
one end of his great-coat.] Hey, yon man of God, 
are yon still alive or are yon dead already? 

Sawa. Why dead? Ahve^ Mdtushka. [He raises 
himself on his elbows.] Please cover my feet, my 
poor woman. So! The right one a little better. 
That's it, Mdtushka. God bless yon! 

Nazabovna. [Covering Sawa's feet.] Sleep, Co- 
tyushha. 

Sawa. How can one sleep? Wonld I had the 
jmtience to bear this snffering; as for sleep — ^that 
doesn't bother me. Sinners don't deserve rest, any- 
way. What's that noise, pilgrim-mother? 

Nazabovka. The Lord sends thnnder. The wind 
blows and the rain keeps on beating on the roof and 
the windows like fine peas. Bo yon hear? The 
floodgates of heaven are ajar. [Thunder is heard.] 
Mercy, mercy, mercy! 

Fedia. It thnnders, rattles and howls, and there 's 
no end to it! Oo-oo-oo ... as if the forest mnr- 
mnred. Oo-oo-oo . . . the wind howls like a dog. 
[He huddles himself together.] It's cold! My 

*A Bnssiaii diminiitiye derived from the word for mother^ but 
lued indiseriminatelj as a term of address among friends or acquain- 
tances or even strangers. For this and the corresponding masculine 
imm—CdiyushJca (from the Bussian for father) — ^which I am here 
introdadngy English has no equivalents. The general sense is vagnelj 
expressed hy *'Uj dear lady" and **M7 dear sir/' respectively— 
Translator. 



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296 ON THE HIGHWAY 

clothes are wringing wet, and the door is wide open. 
[He plays quietlyJ] My harmonica has swelled np 
from the rain, boys, or I wonld give you snch a con- 
cert as wonld lift you off yonr feet. Something 
grand ! A quadrille, say, or a polka maybe, or some 
Russian couplet. We can do all that. In the city, 
where I served as hallman in the Grand Hotel, I 
saved no money, but in the harmonica's estimation 
I outdid myself at every note. And I play the guitar, 
too. 

A VoiCB FROM THB CoBNEB. A fool and foolish 
talk! 

Fedia. From a fool I hear that [A pause 
ensues.] 

Nazabovna. [To Sawa.] You, old man, had bet- 
ter lie in the heat awhile and warm your foot a bit 
[A pause ensues.] Sir ! Man of God ! [She shakes 
Sawa.] Not going to die, are you? 

Fbdia. You, grandfather, had better take a sip 
of vodka. It *11 scorch your insides a bit as you drink, 
but it'll brace you up afterwards. Take a drink. 

Nazabovna. Stop your jabbering, lad. The old 
man is perhaps giving up his soul to God and re- 
penting of his sins, and you keep on like that — and 
with a harmonica. Stop that music, you impudent 
fellow ! 

Fedia. And why don't you leave him in peace? 
He's not feeling well, and here ai^ you keeping up 
an old woman's prattle. He's too good to say a 
rough word to you, and you, fool that you are, are 
only too glad that he listens to you. . * . Sleep, 
grandpa; pay no heed to her. Let her diatter — 
don't you care. An old woman's tongue is like the 
devil's broom; it'll sweep the wisest man out of the 
house. Don't you care! [He clasps his hands.] 
But you are skinny, brother! Awful! Just like a 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 297 

dead skeleton— no vitality at alL Not dying, are 
yon? 

Sawa. Why die? God forbid — ^jnst simply to 
die ! 1*11 bear it a bit and then, with God's help, 111 
be np again. The Holy Virgin won't let me expire 
in a strange land. I '11 die at home. 

Fedia. Are yon from far? 

Sawa. From the district of Vologda. From Vo- 
logda itself — ^I'm a citizen there. 

Fbdia. And where is Vologda? 

TiKHON. Beyond Moscow. It's a government. 

Fedia. Whew! How far yon have wandered, 
greybeard! And all on foot? 

Sawa, On foot, my boy. I was at Tikhon be- 
yond the Don and am now bonnd for the Holy Monn- 
taiDS. From there, by God's leave, I'll make for 
Odessa. Thence, they say, one can get to Jerusalem 
very cheaply — ^for some twenty-one rubles even. 

Fedia. Aiid were yon ever in Moscow? 

Sawa, I should say so I About five times. 

Fedia. a fine city? [He lights his pipe.] Worth 
seeing? 

Sawa. Many holy places, lad. It's always nice 
where holy things abound. 

BoBTsov. [He approaches the bar and Tikhon.] 
Once more, I beg of you, serve a drink, for Christ's 
sake. 

Fbdia. The main thing about a city is that it 
should be clean; to be sprinkled when dusty and 
cleaned when dirty; to have high buildings, a the- 
atre, police, cabs that — I've lived in cities myself; 
I understand. 

BoBTsov. Just a wine-glass — ^here this small one. 
It's only on trust I'll pay you. 

TiKHON. Yes, yes! 

BoBTSOv. I beg of you I Do a favor I 



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298 ON THE HIGHWAY 

TiKHOK. Qto on. 

BoBTsoT. You don't comprehend me. Xlnder- 
standy you scamp, if your peasant blockhead con- 
tains any brains, that it isn't I that ask, but, putting 
it in your peasant language, my inside asks. My 
sickness craves! Understand! 

TiKHON. There's nothing for us to understand. 
Get out I 

BoBTSov. But if I don't have a drink right now 
— ^if I don't satisfy my craving, mind you — ^I'm likely 
to commit a crime. God knows what I may do ! You 
have seen, fool, many drinking folk in your saloon 
life— don't you know yet what such people are! 
They are sick folk. Chain them, beat them, cut them 
up, if you wiU, but don't deny them vodka. Well, 
I humbly beg of you ! Do a favor ! I humiliate my- 
self. My God, how I humiliate myself! 

TiKHON. Up with the money; then there 11 be 
vodka. 

BoBTsov. But where am I to get money! Every- 
thing is gone for drink! Everything, to a thread! 
Then what can I give you? Otoly this overcoat is 
left; but I cannot give you that. ... It's over a 
bare body. . . . Want the cap? [He takes off his 
cap and hands it to Tikhon.] 

TiKHON. [Examining the cap.] Hm! . . . There 
are caps and caps. It's as full of holes as a sieve. 

Fedia. [Laughing.] A noble's! To wear in the 
street and to tip to ladies. * * Hello ! Good-bye I How 
do you do?" 

TiKHON. [Returning Bobtsov's cap.] I wouldn't 
take it as a gift. It's a dunghill ! 

BoBTsov. You don't like it? Then trust me. Ill 
be passing here on my way back from town and 
bring you your five kopeks. May you choke with it 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 299 

Yes, choke I Let it stid: right in your throat. [He 
coughs.] I hate you I 

TteHON. [Pounding his fist on the counter.] 
What do yon want of me? Who are yon, anyway? 
What kind of crook? What brought you here? 

BoBTsov. I want a drink. Not I— exactly I, 
either; my sickness wants it. Understand! 

TiKHON. Don^t try my patience, or you'll be out 
on the steppe in a jiffy. 

BoBTsov. What shall I do? [Walhing away from 
the bar.] What shall I do? [He meditates.] 

Ybfimovn A. It *s the evil one that *s torturing you. 
Just snap your fingers at it, sir. The cursed thing 
whispers to you: **Drinkl Drink!'* But you an- 
swer : * * I won 't I I won *t I ' ' and it *11 leave you alone. 

Fedia. Must have wheels in his head — ^hi-hi-hi! 
It's enough to turn one's stomach. [Giggling.] 
You're queer, sir. Go to sleep! It's no use hang- 
ing around like a scarecrow in the middle of the 
Bfidoon. This is not an orchard. 

BoBTsov. [Viciously.] Shut up! Nobody is ask- 
ing you, you jackass ! 

Fedia. You may talk and talk, but don't go too 
far. I have met your kind before. There are many 
such as you sauntering up and down the highway. 
And as for ** jackass," I'll give you such a box on 
the ear that you will howl louder than the wind. 
You're a jackass yourself, you good-for-nothing! 
{A pause ensues.] Rascal! 

Nazabovna. The old man is praying perhaps and 
giving up his soul to his Maker, and they, the blas- 
phemers, keep on picking quarrels with each other 
— and what language! Shame on them! 

Fbdia. And you, cabbage-stalk, should not grum- 
ble once you are in a saloon. In saloons there's 
saloon manners. 



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300 ON THE HIGHWAY 

BoBTSOv. But how can If What shall I do f How 
make him imderstandf Is eloquence necessary f 
[To TiKHON.] The blood dots my heart Uncle 
TikhonI [Weeping.] Unde TikhonI 

Sawa, [Groaning.] 1 have a shooting in the leg 
as from a bullet of fire. . . • Pilgrim mother, Md- 
tiishkat 

Yefimovna, Well, Cdtyuskkaf 

Sawa. Who is weeping? 

Ybfimovna. The nobleman. 

Sawa. Ask the nobleman to shed a tear for me, 
that I may live to die at Vol6gda. A tearful prayer 
is more acceptable. 

BoBTsov. I am not praying, sir. Nor are these 
tears; it's sap. The heart contracts and makes the 
sap run. [He sUs down at Sawa's feet.] Sap, this 
is I But how could you understand? It isnt for 
your dark mind, sir, to understand. You people 
are sitting in the darkness. 

Sawa. But are there any who have the light? 

BoBTSov. There are such, grandpa. They would 
understand. 

Sawa. Indeed, there are, my friend. The saints 
had that light. They understood all suffering— un- 
derstood it without your ever telling them anything, 
either. They just looked into one's eyes, and they 
had it. And what comfort their understanding 
brought one I It was as if you never had any woe 
— 'twas gone as by a touch of the hand. 

Fedia. And have you ever seen saints? 

Sawa. Occasionally, my boy. There are many 
people of all kinds on earth. There are the sinners, 
and there are the servants of God. 

BoBTSov. I don't understand this at alL Talk is 
addressed to the understanding, but have I any rea- 
son now? I have only feelii^ — ^thirst! [He sud- 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 301 

devly walks up to the harJ\ Tikhon, take the over- 
coat Understand f [About to take it off.] The 
overcoat. 

TiKHON. And underneath is whatf [He peeps 
under Bobtsov's overcoat.] The bare body? No, 
don^t remove it; I won't take it. I won't take sin 
upon my sonL 

[Mbbik enters.] 

BoBTSov. Well, I take the sin on myself. All 
right? 

Mebik. [He quietly takes off his great-coat, re- 
maining in a sheepskin jacket. In his belt is an axe.] 
Some feel cold, while bears and those who forget 
their kin always feel hot. I'm perspiring! [He 
puts the axe on the floor and removes his jacket.] 
Before one drags a foot ont of the mnd he's in a 
pool of perspiration. You drag one foot oat, and 
in goes the other. 

Ybpimovna. That's so. . . . The rain hasn't 
slackened, has it, friend. 

Mebik. [Glancing at Yefimovna.] I don't talk 
with old women. [A pause ensues.] 

BoBTSOv. [To TiKHON.] I take the sin on my- 
self. Do yon hear or not? 

TiKHON. I don't want to hear, either. Leave me 
alone! 

Mebik. It's pitch-dark, as if someone had 
smeared the sky with tar. Not a sonl is to be seen. 
And the rain keeps beating in one's face like a snow- 
storm. [He takes his clothes and axe under his 
arm.] 

Fedia. For such as you — thieves — that's just the 
tlung. Beasts of prey lie in hiding, and for you, 
merry Andrews, it's a holiday. 

Mebik. And from whom do I hear this? 

Fedia. Look and see. Not blind, are you? 



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302 ON THE HIGHWAY 

Mbbik. Ill make note of this. [He wallcs up to 
TiKHON.] Hello, big mug! Or don't yon recognize 
mef 

TiKHON. If one shonld remember all yon dmnk- 
ards who pass on the highway, it wonld add tea 
fnrrows to his forehead. 

Mebik. Then, take a look. [A pause ensues.] 

TiKHOK. I have yon already, what do yon think 
of that! I recognized yon by yonr optics. [He holds 
out a hand.] Andrei Polikarpovf 

Mebik. I was Andrei Polikarpov, bnt now call 
me Tegor Merik. 

TiKHON. Why so ? 

Mbbik. Whatever passport it pleases the Lord to 
give me, by that name am I known. I've been Merik 
for abont two months. [Thunder roars.] Te, te, te I 
Fire away I Who 's af raidf [He surveys the room.] 
Any police spies here! 

TiKHON. What spies f Mostly gnats and mos- 
qnitoes. A tame lot this is. The police mnst now 
be sonnd asleep in their f eatherbeds. [Aloud.] Say, 
prdvosldvnye^^ watch yonr pockets and clothes if 
yon wonldn't be sorry. A crook! Might steal! 

Mebik. Let 'em watch their cash, if they have 
any; bnt as for their clothes, I won't tondi 'em. 
Nowhere to take 'em. 

TiKHON. Where the dence are yon going! 

Mebik. To Knban. 

TiKHON. Oho ! 

Fedia. To Knban! Upon yonr word! [He 
rises.] Fine places! It's snch a region, friends, 
that yon can't even dream of it thongh yon shonld 

* Another untranslatable term. It means, literally, ''true b^67- 
ers," but is used by Russian peasants to express more the idea of 
comrade8hip--8ome^ing like ' ' countrymen ' '— ^han any religious eon- 
notation. The "word, whieh is a pronominal adjective, is here used 
in the plural. — Translator. 



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ON TEE HIGEWAY 303 

sleep three years. Such profiiBion! They say the 
birds there, the game, the animals of all Mnds, and 
—my God! Why, the grass grows there all year 
round, the people live lie brothers, and they have 
more land than they know what to do with. The 
government, they say — a soldier told me the other 
day — ^grants one hundred dessiatins^ per head. 
That's happiness, by golly! 

Mebik. Happiness. . . . Happiness follows be- 
hind one's back. It can't be seen. You'll not be 
happy sooner than you can bite you own elbow. It's 
all nonsense. [He surveys the benches and the peo- 
ple.] Looks like a prisoners' halting-place. What 
poverty! 

Ybfimovna. [To Mebik.] Such fierce eyes! 
There's enmity in you, lad. Don't stare at us ! 

Mebik. Such poverty ! 

Ybfimovna. Turn away! [She pushes Sawa.] 
Sawa, dear, a widced man is staring at us. It bodes 
no good, my dear. [To Mebik.] Turn away, I say, 
you serpent! 

Sawa. He won't touch you, Matushka, he won't 
€k)d won't permit it. 

Mebik. What true believers! [He shrugs his 
shoulder sJ\ So quiet! Why, you are not asleep, 
you bow-legged ones. Why do you keep quiet? 

Yepimovna. Turn away your eyes — ^tum away 
your devil's look! 

Mebik. Shut up, you crooked old thing! It was 
not with the devil's look, but with kindness and good 
cheer, that I noticed your sad lot. You huddle up 
from the cold like flies; so I took pity on you and 
wanted to say a kind word — ^wanted to comfort you 
— and there you turn away your faces. Well! All 

*A desnatiiia is equal to a litUe more than 2% acres. 



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304 OAT THE HIGHWAY 

right ! \He walks up to Fbdia.] Where do you hail 
from! 

Fedia. From hereabouts ; Khamonovsky Zavod-— 
from the brick yards. 

Mebik. Gtet upy sir. 

Fbdia. [Rising.] Well! 

MsBiK. Up, up altogether. Ill lie down here. 

Fedia. Not your place, is it! 

Mbbik. It is. Go spread on the floor. 

Fedia. Pass on, wayfarer. I am not afraid of 
you. 

MsBiK. Saucy! Well, go and donH argue, or 
you^ll cry, fool. 

TiKHON. [To Fbdia.] Don't cross him, lad. Do 
as he says. 

Fedia. What right have you! You bulge out 
your pike eyes and think I'm afraid of you. [He 
gathers up his belongings under his arm and pro- 
ceeds to make his bed on the floor.] Devil ! [He lies 
down and covers his head and all.] 

Mbbik. [Making his bed on the bench.] Then 
you haven't seen the devil, if you call me one- 
Devils aren't like that. [He lies down and places 
his axe beside him.] Lie down, dear axe, comrade 
mine. Let me cover you, axie. 

TiKHON. Where did you get that axe! 

Mbbik. Why, I stole it; stole it, and now must 
carry it about as a fool would some gaudy-colored 
bag: I hate to leave it behind and yet have nowhere 
to keep it — ^it's like a loathsome wife. . . . No, 
friend [He covers himself], devils aren't like that 

Fedia. [Poking his head out from under his 
great-coat.] How, then! 

Mbbik. They are like vapor, spirit, like a puff 
of air [BlouAng] — that's how they are. One cant 
see them. 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 305 

A YoioB FBOM THB CoBNEB« If he should sit under 
hedges, he might. 

Mbbik. I tried and didn't see. They lie, the old 
women and silly peasants. Neither the devil, nor 
the wood-nymph, nor the dead can be seen. The eye 
isn't made to see everything. When I was a lad I 
used to go to the woods at night in order to see the 
wood-nymph. I would yell and shout with all my 
might, calling the goddess of the forest and never 
wi^dng an eye. Well, I imagined all sorts of queer 
things, but I saw no nymph. I would go to ceme- 
teries at night to see ghosts, but the old women lie. 
I saw all kinds of beings, but as for that Awful One 
— ^I couldn't see him to save my life. We haven't 
the eye for it. 

A Voice fbom the Cobneb. Don't be so sure 
about that; sometimes one can see. A peasant in 
our village once killed a pig. He ripped his belly 
open when out leaped the — 

Sawa. [Rising.'] Boys, don't be mentioning the 
Evil One. It's a sin, my friends. 

MsBiK. Ah, you greybeard I You skeleton I [He 
laughs.'] We needn't visit cemeteries ; our own dead 
creep out here from xmderground to read us ser- 
mons. A sin! It's not for those with your foolish 
ideas to read people lectures. You are a gloomy 
lot, steeped in ignorance. [He lights his pipe.] My 
father was a peasant and also liked to read us ser- 
mons. One night he stole a bag of apples from the 
parson. He brought it to us and said : **Boys, don t 
munch any apples before the great fast — ^it's a sin." 
You act the same way. The devil must not be men- 
tioned, but it's all right to cuss. Take this hag 
here, for instance. [He points to Ybfimovna.] In 
me she saw a wicked man, and yet she herself, from 



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306 ON THE HIGHWAY 

woman's folly, has yielded her soul to the devil some 
five times, no donbt. 

Yefimovna. Fie, fie, fie! Christ protect ns I [She 
covers her face with her hands.] Sawa, dear I 

TiKHOK. Why do you scare themf And gladi 
[The wind slams the door.] Jesns Christ, what a 
wind! 

Mbbik. [Stretching.] O, if one conld but show 
his strength! [The door slams again in the wind.] 
Pit it against this wind here ! It cant tear tiie door 
off its hinges, while I conld, if it came to that, puSL 
this tavern np by the roots* [He rises and Ues 
down.] What a bore ! 

Nazabovna. Say your prayers, you heathoi! 
Why are you restless? 

Ybfimovna. Leave him alone, the plague take 
him! He is again staring at us. [To Mebik.] 
Don't stare, wicked man. What eyes! What eyes! 
Like the demon's before early mass. 

Sawa« Let him stare, pilgrim-mothers. Offer up 
a prayer and his eye will bring you no harm. 

BoBTSov. No, I cannot — ^it's beyond my endur- 
ance ! [He wcUhs over to the bar.] Listen, Tikhon, 
I ask you the last time: half a glass ! 

TiKHOK. [He shakes his head.] Money! 

BoBTSOv. My Gk)d, but haven 1 1 told you already? 
Everything is gone for drink. Where shall I grt 
you money? And will it ruin you to give me a drop 
of vodka on trust? A glass of vodka stands yoa 
but two kopeks, but for me it means deliverance from 
suffering. How I suffer! It's not caprice, but suf- 
fering! Understand? 

TiKHOK. Try it on somebody else. Go ask those 
prdvosldvnyi there — ^let them treat you for tiie sake 
of Christ, if they will—but I give only bread for 
Christ's sake. 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 307 

BoBTSoY. Yon can skin those panpers yonrself , 
bnt I wonld rather be exensed. It's not in me to 
rob them. Not in me I Understand! {He pounds 
his fist an the bar.] Not in me I [A pause enst^es.] 
Em • . . bnt wait [He turns to the pUgrims.] And 
that's not a bad idea, either — prdvosldvnyi, won't 
yon sacrifice five kopeks f It's the inside that begs. 
I'm Bickl 

Pbdia. Oh, yoni ^'Sacrifice." Cheat! Isn't 
-water good enongh for yon? 

BoBTsoy. Bnt how I lower myself I My, how I 
hnmiliate myself I Never mind 1 I don 't want any- 
thing — ^I was only joking. 

Mbbik. Yon won 't move him. Boss. He 's a noted 
miser. Wait, I mnst have a five-kop& piece some- 
where. We'll have a glass together, half and half. 
{He fumbles in his pockets.] (Jot stnck somewhere, 
damn it! I thought I heard something jingling in 
the pocket recentiy. No, it's gone. Gone, friend. 
Snch is yonr Inckl [A pa/use ensues.] 

BoBTSov. I can't go without a drink. I'll com- 
mit some crime--or else decide on snidde. What 
shall I dot My God! [He looks to the door.] Go 
away, perhaps? Go forth into this darkness, lead 
wherever chance may t 

Mebik. Why don't yon, dear pilgrims, read him 
sermons? And yon, Tihon, why don't yon pnt him 
ont? He hasn't paid for his night's lodging, yon 
know. Kick him ont; take him by the collar! Oh, 
how bmtal people are nowadays! They have no 
sentiment or Undness. Fierce folk! A man is 
drowning, and they shont to him: ''Drown faster. 
We haven't time to watch; this is onr bnsy day." 
As for throwing him a rope, that's ont of the ques- 
tion. Bope costs money! 

Sawa. Don't censnre, kind man. 



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308 ON THE HIGHWAY 

Mebik* Shut up, yon old wolf I Yon are a cmel 
lot Monsters I Soul-mongers I [To Tikhok.] 
Oome over here and pull off my boots. Quick I 

TiKHON. Ho, ho, what airsl [He laugh8.'\ It's 
awful! 

Mbbik, Come on, I say. Quid:! [A pause en- 
suesJl Do you hear or not! What am I talking tof 
[He risesJ] 

TiKHON. Say, say, that'll do. 

Mebik. I want you, bloodsucker, to pull the boots 
off me — me, a poor tramp. 

TiKHOK. Well, well, don't rage. Have a drink. 
Come have a glass. 

MsBiK. Folks, what am I askingt That he treat 
me to drinks or remove my boots f Have I expressed 
myself inaccurately? [To Tikhok.] You didn't 
hear me right, it seems. I'll wait a minute — ^per- 
haps you'll get me. [There is considerable commo- 
tion among the pilgrims and others. They get up 
and stare at Tikhon and Mbbik in silent suspense.] 

TiKHON. The evil one brought you ! [He comes 
out from behind the bar.] What a lord we have 
here! Well, come on, then. [He pulls off Mebik's 
boots.] What a rogue! 

Mbbik. That's right. Place them alongside each 
other. That's it. Now go! 

TiKHON. [He returns behind the bar after re- 
moving the boots.] But my, how you like to joke! 
Another one of your jokes here and out you go in 
a jiffy! Sure enough! [To Bobtsov, who is ap- 
proaching.] You again f 

BoBTSOv. You see, I could give you some gold 
trinket. It's yours, if you want it. 

TiKHON. Why do you stutter? Talk like a man. 

BoBTSOv. Though it is very mean on my part, 
what else can I do? Being dead broke, I bring my- 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 309 

self over to this meanness. Even a court would 
acquit me. Take it but on condition that you return 
it to me later when I come back from town. I hand 
it to you before witnesses. Ladies and gentlemen, 
you be the witnesses ! [He takes from his hosom a 
golden locket] Here it is. I ought to remove the 
picture, but I've no place to keep it; I*m all wet. 
Well, grab it — ^picture and all. Only remember: 
your fingers must not touch this face ! I beg of you. 
I was rude to you, dear sir, and foolish, but you 
will pardon me and not touch it with your fingers. 
Don't let your eyes rest on this face. [He hands 
TiKHON the locket.] 

TiKHON. [Examining the locket.] A stolen little 
watch. . . . Well, all right, drink. [He pours out 
a glass.] Drink till you burst 1 

BoBTsov. But don't let your fingers touch it. 
[He drinks slowly and spasmodically.] 

TiKHON. [Opening the locket.] Hm, a lady I 
Where did you get such a onet 

Mebik. Let's see it. [He gets up and walks over 
to the bar.] Let's have a look. 

TiKHON. [Pushing Mbbik's hand away.] Stand 
back 1 See it in my hand. 

Fedia. [He gets up and goes to Tikhon.] Let 
me see it, too. 

[From all sides pilgrims and others approach the 
bar, forming a crowd.] 

Mebik. [With both his hands he tightly holds 
Tikhon 's hand with the locket and silently eyes the 
picture. A pause ensues.] A handsome little devil. 
From the nobility. 

Fedia. Yes, from the nobility. What cheeks I 
What eyes I Get your hand out of the way; I can't 
see. Hair down to the waist Just as if alive I Was 
about to speak. [There is silence.] 



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310 ON THE HIGHWAY 

Mebik. For a weak man this is the great^t corse. 
Onoe such a woman gets astride a fellow, he [Wav- 
ing his hand in despair] — ^he's done for. 
[The voice of Kuzma is heard. **Hol Ho, you 

fowll"] 

Kuzma. [Entering.] The tavern standing on the 
way tempts the traveller by night and day. One 
may pass his own father in broad daylight withont 
noticing him, bnt a tavern can be seen in the dark a 
hundred versts away. To one side, all ye who be- 
lieve in God 1 WelL [He knocks a five kopek piece 
on the bar.] A glass of real Madiera ! Quick I 

Fedia. 0, you reckless devil 1 

TiKHON. Don*t swing your arms; you'll knodc 
this out of my hand. 

Kuzma. That's what God intended them for, to 
be swung. She's all melted, the sweetmeat, — ^your 
aunt, the chicken. Scared by the rain, the tender- 
foot! [He drinks.] 

Ybfimovna. Who wouldn't be afraid, my good 
man, to be out on the road in such a night as tMsf 
Now, thank God, there are plenty of villages and 
farms along the way where one may find shelter 
from the elements, but formerly it was something 
terrible. You could go a htmdred versts and not 
only come upon no farms or villages, but not see a 
chip of wood. You had to sleep on the ground. 

Kuzma. And how long, old woman, have you been 
knocking about in the world t 

Ybfimovna. Going on eighty, Gdtyushkd. 

Kuzma. Going on eighty! Why, you'll soon be 
as old as a crow. [He looks at Bobtsov.] And what 
sort of bird is thist [He eyes Bobtsov dosdy.] A 
nobleman! 

[Bobtsov recognizes Kuzma and, blushing, goes off 
to the comer and sits down on the bench.] 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 311 

KuzMA. Semion Serge^vitch I Is that you or not? 
Eey? How come yon to be in this tavern? Is this 
the place for yon? 

BoBTsoY. HnshI 

Mbbik. [To Kuzma.] Who is that? 

KxrzMA. An nnf ortnnate snfferer. [He nervously 
^oalhs about by the bar.] Ah I In a saloon I What 
do yon think of that? In rags! DmnkI I am 
shocked, friends, shocked I [He talks in a half -whis- 
per to Mebik.] This is onr master— onr landlord, 
Semion Sergeevitch Bortsov. Did yon notice his 
condition? Doesn't look mnch like a man, does he? 
Thus does drinking — ^Another glass I [He drinks.] 
I come from his village, from Bortsovka — maybe 
yonVe heard of it — ^two hundred versts from here, 
in the district of Yegorov. We were his father's 
serfs — 'Tis a pity I 

Mbbik. Was he rich? 

KxjzMA. Very. 

Mebik. Squandered his father's wealth? 

KxjzMA. No ; ill luck, my friend. He was a fine 
gentleman — ^rich and temperate. [To Tikhok.] 
You may have seen him pass this tavern on his way 
to town. Fine, spirited horses and a carriage on 
springs — ^first class I He kept fifteen horses, my 
friend. About five years ago he was crossing the 
Mikishkin Ferry here, I remember, and instead of 
five kopeks he tossed a ruble. **No time," says he, 
**to wait for change." What do you think of that? 

Mbbik. He must have been out of his mind. 

KxjzMA. He acted like one in his senses. It all 
came from being chicken-hearted — ^from too much 
riches. To begin with, boys, there was a woman in 
the case. He fell in love, that good man, with a city- 
bred girl and imagined her the most beautiful woman 
in the whole world. The crow fell in love worse than 



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312 ON THE HIGHWAY 

a falcon. Comes from a respectable family, she 
does ; not a loose woman or anything like thai, but 
simply a flirt Just went about twisting and twirling 
and making eyes all the time. Always laughing and 
smiling — ^no brains at all. The nobility like that; 
they think her clever. Our peasant way would be 
simply to chase her out of the house. Well, she re- 
turned his love, and the nobleman's fate was sealed. 
He commenced to take her out and all that — treat 
her to teas and sweetmeats, all-night rowing and 
piano-playing. 

BoBTSov. Don't tell, Kuzma. Why should you! 
What have they to do with my lifet 

Kuzma. Beg pardon, your honor. I just told the 
least bit — ^a mere trifle — and that'll do for them. 
Just a bit, because I was shocked — ^very mudi 
shocked, I was. Another glass, there I [He drinks.^ 

Mebik. [In a half-whisper.] And did she love 
himt 

Kuzma. [In a half-whisper which gradually rises 
to regular speech.] How could she fail to love him! 
He's no insignificant nobleman. Who wouldn't fall 
in love when there are a thousand dessiatins and 
money to bum! He himself was a man of parts, 
dignified and temperate, hobnobbing with every gov- 
ernment official, like you and me here, shaking their 
hands [He takes Mehik by the hand] — ^'^heUo" and 
** good-bye" and **by your leave." Well, one night 
I was passing through the noble's park, a park, 
friend, five versts long. I was walking quietly. I 
looked around and there were they sitting on a 
bench [He imitates a kiss] kissing each other— he 
her once and she, the serpent, him twice. He takes 
her snow-white hand in his, and she's all aglow, hug- 
ging him and hugging him, the devil take her. '*I 
love you, Senia," says she. And Senia, like one 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 313 

dazed, from sheer good nature, goes about from 
place to place bragging about his happiness. He 
^ves one a ruble, another two; gives me money to 
l>uy a horse. Exempts all his debtors for joy 1 

BoBTSOv. But, why be telling about itt These 
people have no sympathy. It^s torture I 

KuzMA. Only a trifle, sir. They*re inquiring, 
and why not tell a bit? But if it makes you angry, 
then I won^t, that's all. I don't give a hang for 
them. 

[The postman^s hells are heard.] 

Fedia. Don't holler; talk low. 

KuzMA. I'm talking low as it is. He won't have 
it, and that's all there is to it. And there's nothing 
more to tell, anyhow. They got married — ^that's alL 
Nothing more to it. Fill another glass, there, for 
Kuzma, the temperate. [He drinks.] I don't like 
drunkenness 1 After the wedding, just as people 
were about to have supper, what should she do but 
run away in a cab I [In a whisper.] To the city to 
a lawyer, her lover I How's that? What do you 
think of her? At that very moment, mind you. 
Killing her wouldn't be enough I 

Mbbik. [Thinking.] Yes; and then what? 

KxjzMA. Lost his reason. As you see, he started 
out to kill a fly and now, I hear, he's up against the 
bumble-bee.* Those were flies, but now it's bumble- 
bees 1 And he still loves her; you can see that he 
does. He must now be going to the city on foot to 
glance at her. He'll have a look and return. 

[The mail-coach arrives at the tavern. The postman 
enters and drinks.] 

TiKHON. The mail is late today. 

*A Buesian proTarb whose meaning must be gathered from the 
eontezt. 



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314 ON THE HIGHWAY 

[The postman silently pays and goes otU. The nuMH- 
coach, with bells tinkling, leaves.] 

A VoiOB FBOM THB CoBNEB. Li such Weather to 
rob the mail would be a cinch! 

Mebik. I have lived thirty-five years in the world 
and never once robbed the maiL [A pause ensues.] 
Now it's gone — ^too late I Too late I 

KuzMA. Want a taste of Siberia? 

Mehik. Some rob and don't taste it. And even 
if Siberia I [Bluntly.] What next? 

KuzMA. Yon refer to the unfortunate one? 

Mehik. Whom else could I meant 

KuzMA. The next question, friends, how came his 
ruinf A brother-in-law, his sister's husband. He 
took a notion to guarantee a loan of some thirty 
thousand rubles made by this man from a banking 
house. That brother-in-law is a grafter; he knows 
his business, the rascal — ^no flies on him, I tell you. 
He took the money, and as for paying it back — ^why, 
what's the uset And so our man just had to come 
across with that thirty thousand ! [He sighs.] Fool- 
ish fellow, and it's his own foolishness that he is 
paying for. His wife had children by that lawyer, 
and his brother-in-law bought an estate near Poltava, 
while this here fellow goes about the saloons and, 
like a fool, complains to us, peasants: **I've lost all 
faith, my friends. I have no one, that is, to pin my 
faith to." Chicken-heartedness 1 Everyone has his 
troubles. The serpent gnaws at the heart, hence men 
take to drink. Take, for instance, the head of our 
volost.^ His wife brings a man teacher to the house 
in broad daylight, spending on drink the money of 
her husband, while he just walks about and snules. 
Grub a bit thinner, that's all. 

TiKHON. [Sighing.] It's all according to the 
strength God's given one. 

*A rural district 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 315 

Kt7Zma« That does vary, it is true. . . . Well, 
what's coming to you? [He pays.'\ Take the bloody 
money 1 Good-bye, boys. Good night, sleep tight 1 
I must ran; I'm late. I'm bringing a midwife from 
the hospital to a lady. She must have grown tired 
waiting, the good-natured thing, and wet to the skia. 
[He hurries out.'\ 

TiKHON. [After a pause."] Hey, there I What's 
your name t Unhappy man, come have a drink. [He 
fills a glass.] 

BoBTsov. [He approaches the bar hesitatingly and 
drinks.] It means I now owe you for two drinks ! 

TiKHOK. O, never mind. Drink, that's all. Drown 
your woes in sorrow. 

Fedia. Have one on me, boss. Alas I [He throws 
a five-kopek piece on the bar.] One dies if he drinks, 
and dies if he doesn't. It's all right without drink, 
but with it, by Jove, is pleasanter. Even sorrows 
grow lighter with drhik. Drink away I 

BoBSTOV. Whew I It 'shot I 

Mebik. Let's have it. [He takes the locket from 
TiKHON and studies the picture.] Hml Baa off 
after the wedding, eht Is that the kind you are! 

A Voice from the Cobkeb. Fill aaother glass, 
Tisha. Let him have one on me, too. 

Mebik. [Dashing the locket to the floor.] Damn 
you! [He walks quickly to his place and lies down 
with his face to the wall. A commotion follows.] 

BoBSTOv. What's thist What do you call thatt 
[He picks up the locket.] How dare you, brute! 
What right have you! [Wailing.] D 'you want me 
to kill you, do you t Peasant ! BufBan 1 

TiKHOK. It's enough to rage, boss. It 'snot made 
of glass; it didn't break. Have another drink and 
go to bed. [He fills a glass.] I lingered too long to 



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316 ON THE HIGHWAY 

listen to yon fellows; it was time to dose np long 
ago. [He goes and locks the outside door.] 

BoBSTOV. [Drinks.] How dared he f And such a 
fool, tool [To Mebik.] Understand? You are a 
fool — an ass ! 

Sawa, Friends! Honorable gentlemen I Give 
yonr tongnes a rest What 's the good of noise ? Let 
people sleep. 

TiKHOK. Lie down, lie down. Enough of that! 
[He goes behind the bar and locks the drawer con- 
taining the day's receipts.] It's time to sleep. 

Fbdia. I should say it is ! [He lies down.] Oood 
nighty folks. 

Mehik. [He get up and spreads his sheepskin 
coat on the bench.] Here, boss, lie down. 

TiKHON. And where will you sleep! 

Mbbik. Anywhere ; even on the floor. [He spreads 
his great-coat on the floor.] It's all the same to me. 
[He places his axe beside hint.] For him it's a hard- 
ship to sleep on the floor. He 's used to fine linen and 
cotton mattresses. 

TiKHON. [To BoBTSov.] Lie down, sir. It's 
enough to stare at the picture. [He blows out the 
candle.] Be done with her! 

BoBTSOv. [Tottering.] Where am I to lie down! 

TiKHOK. On the tramp's place. Dichi't you hear 
him give it to you! 

BoBTSov. [He approaches the above-mentioned 
place.] I'm — ^rather drunk. Is this it! Here am I 
to sleep, eh! 

TiKHON. Here, here; lie down, don't fear. [He 
stretches himself on the bar.] 

BoBTSOv. [Lying doum.] I — am— drunk. All 
about is. [He opens the locket.] (Jot a light! [A 
pause ensues.] You, Masha, are a queer little 
woman. You look at me from the frame there and 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 317 

smile. [He laughs.] Drunk 1 But is it fair to laugh 
at a fellow who's drunk f You overlook this, as 
Stchastlivtoev^ would say, and fall in love with a 
drunkard. 

Fbdia. How the wind howls 1 It's terrible I 

BoBTSOv. [He laughs.] You 're funny I How can 
you spin like that? No one can catch up with you. 

Mbbik. He's raving — ^bewitched by the picture. 
[He Umghs.] Here's a curious situation 1 Learned 
men have invented all kinds of machines and medi- 
cines, but no wise man has yet found an antidote for 
the female sex. They study how to cure every dis- 
ease, but it never even occurs to them that more peo- 
ple perish through women than from disease. Sly, 
mercenary, xmgracious creatures, with no brains at 
all! Mothers-in-law intriguing against their daugh- 
ters-in-law, the latter trying to blacken their hus- 
bands, and so on without end. 

TiKHON. The women have pulled his ears and 
now his hair's on end. 

Mbbik. I am not the only one. From the begin- 
ning of time, ever since the world was created, people 
have been complaining. It's not for nothing that 
in stories and songs woman and the devil are linked 
together. Not for nothing! It's true, even if only 
half true. [A pause follows.] That noble there is 
making a fool of himself. It wasn't from too big a 
head, either, that I left my parents and went 
tramping. 

Fedia. Women? 

Mbbik. Like that nobleman, I, too, walked about 
like one under a spell, boasting of my happiness, day 
and night like a man in a fever. But the time came 

*Aii obflcure reference inexplicable hj anything in the play. The 
word itself is a proper maeculine noun derived from the lUissian for 
' ' happiness. ' ' — Translator. 



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318 ON THE HIGHWAY 

and I opened my eyes. It wasn't love — ^just deceit! 

Fbdia, What did yon do to hert 

Mebik. None of yonr bnsiness. [-4 pause en- 
sues.] Killed her, yon think? I didn't have the 
conrage. I not only spared her, bnt pitied her 
besides. — ^Live and be happy I Only keep ont of my 
sight, and may I forget yon, yon venomons snake f 
[A knock is heard at the door.] 

TiKHOK. Who the devil's thist Who's there? 
[The knocking continues.] Who's knocking? [He 
gets up and goes to the door.] Who's knocking? 
Pass on yonr way ; we're locked np 1 

A VoiOB FBOM Behind thb Doob. Let me in, 
Tikhon; do a favor 1 A spring's broken in the car- 
riage. Help a fellow ont ; be a friend in need. If we 
coidd only fasten it with some rope, we might get 
there somehow. 

TiKHON. Who are yon driving? 

A VoioB FBOM Behind the Doob. A lady going 
from the city to Vars6nsfievo. Only five versts 
farther. Help one ont 1 

Tikhon. Go tell the lady that if shell pay ten 
mbles we'll get a rope and fix np that spring. 

A Voice FBOM Behind thb Doob. What! Are you 
crazy? Ten mbles 1 Yon mad dog I Exnlting in 
people's misfortnnes? 

TiKHON. Jnst as yon like. If yon don't want to, 
very well. 

A Voice fbom Behind the Doob. Well, all ri^t; 
wait a while. [A pause follows.] The lady says it's 
all right. 

Tikhon. Come in I [He opens the door and 
admits the driver.] 

The Dbiveb. Hello, prdvosldvnyel Well, fetch 
the rope I Qnick ! Boys, who'll lend a hand? There'll 
be tips. 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 319 

TiKHON. Oh, what's the use tipping t Let them 
sleep. We two can manage it ourselves. 

Thb Dbiveb. Whew, how tired I ami The cold 
and the mud — ^not a dry spot anywhere I Another 
thing, friend: Haven't you a room here for the lady 
to get warmt The carriage has tilted so that there 
is no sitting up in it. 

TiKHON. A room I What ever put that into her 
head? Let her thaw out here if she is frozen; we'll 
find a place. [He goes to Bobtsov and dusts off a 
place near him.'] Get up, get up I Lie on the floor 
an hour or so while a lady gets warm. [ To Bobtsov.] 
Eise, sirl Sit up awhile. [Bobtsov me5.] Here's a 
place for you. 

[The driver goes out."] 

Fbdia. Here's a fine guest for you ; the devil sent 
"her I Now there'll be no sleeping again before day- 
break. 

TiKHON. Sorry I didn't ask fifteen 1 She'd pay. 
[He stops before the door in an expectant altitude.] 
You people don't be so rough. Don't use such 
language. 
[Mabia Yboobovka enters^ followed by the driver.] 

TiKHON. [Boumg.] Welcome, your highness I 
Ours is but a peasant's hut — a rat-hole. Don't 
scorn it. 

Mabia Yegobovka. I can't see a thing here. Where 
am I to got 

TiKHON. This way, your highness. [He leads 
her to the place by Bobtsov.] Here, please. [He 
blows away the dust.] I have no private room; I'm 
sorry. But, Madam, have no fear; these are good, 
quiet people. 

Makea Yboobovna. [Sittvng down beside Bobtsov.] 
My, how terribly dose it is here I Open the door at 
least I 



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320 ON THE HIGHWAY 

TiKHOK. All right, madanL [He runs over and 
opens the door.] 

Mebik. People are freezing here and they throw 
the door wide open I [He gets up and slams the door 
shtU.] What a boss you are 1 [He lies doum.} 

TiKHON. I beg your pardon, your highness. 
That^s our jester; he^s a little off. But don^t fear, 
he won^t touch you. Only— excuse me, madani— I 
can't take ten rubles. Fifteen, if you please. 

Mabia YsQOBOYKA. All right, ouly bc quick about it 

TiKHON. This minute. We'll have it fixed in a 
twinkling. [He puUs a rope from under the bar.] 
This very minute. 

[A pat^e follows.] 

BoBTsov. [Gaeing at Mabia Ybgobovna.] Mary! 
Masha! 

Mabia Yboobovka. [Looking at Bobtsov.] What 
now, I wonder? 

Bobtsov. Mary, is this you? Where do you come 
from? 

[Mabia Yboobovka, having recognized Bobtsov, 

shrieks and hounds off to the centre of 

the tavern.] 

Bobtsov. [FoUovnng her.] Maria, it's II [He 
giggles.] My wife I Maria I And where am I? A 
light, folks 1 

Mabia Ybgobovna. Go away I You lie — ^it isnt 
you. It's impossible I [She covers her face with her 
hands. ] It 's a lie — ^a joke 1 

Bobtsov. The voice, the gait I Maria, it 's 1 1 III 
soon — ^get sober. My head swims. My (JodI Wait, 
wait — ^I don't understand anything. [He shouts.] 
My wife 1 [He drops hy her feet weeping.] 
[A group gathers around the couple.] 

Mabia Ybgobovna, Stand back. [To the driver.] 
Dennis, let's start. I can't stay here any longer. 



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ON THE HIGHWAY 321 

Mbbik. [He jumps up and stares at her face.] 
The picture I [He grabs her by the hand.] That's 
her 1 Hey, folks, it's the noble 's wife I 

Mabia Yboobovna. (Jet away, fool I [She tries to 
free her arm.] Dennis, why do you look out [Dbn- 
ins amd TiKHOK ru/n up to her and take Mbbik by the 
arms.] This is a murderer's den 1 Let go my hand ! 
I'm not afraid. Be off with you I 

Mbbik. Wait, 111 let go soon. Let me say just 
a word to you, one word, tiiat you may understand— 
wait [He turns to Tikhon and Dbnnis.] Away 
with you, blodcheads ; don't hold me I I won't let go 
before I have said that word. Wait — ^just a second. 
[He strikes his forehead unth his fist.] Nol God 
has denied me the wisdom; I can't hit upon a word 
for you I 

Mabia Tbgobovna. [Freeing her hand.] Get away 
with you I Drunkards 1 Dennis, we are off I [She 
starts for the door.] 

Mbbik. [Blocking her way.] Well, just glance at 
him with but one eye ! Caress him with but a single 
word of love 1 I beg of you, in the name of (Jod. 

Mabia Ybgobovka. Take this madman away 
from mel 

Mbbik. Then perish, you damned thing! [He 
swings his axe. A terrible commotion ensues. Every- 
one jumps up unth noise and shrieks of horror. 
Sawa gets between Mbbik and Mabia Ybgobovka. 
Dbnnis forcibly pushes Mbbik aside and carries the 
lady out of the tavern. Then everyone stands as 
though stunned. A long pause follows.] 

BoBTSOv. [Beating the air with his hands.] 
Maria I Where are you, Maria ? 

Nazabovna. My God, my God I You have broken 
my heart, you murderers I Oh, what a cursed night I 



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322 ON THE HIGHWAY 

Mebik. [Dropping his arm that holds the axe.] 
Have I finished her or nott 

TiKHON. Thank (Jod, your head is safe. 

Mebik. Then I didn't kill her I [He walks w^ 
steadily to his bed.] It's not my fate to meet death 
through a stolen axe. [He drops on his bed and 
weeps.] How sadl How terribly sad I Pity me, 
prdvosldvnyel 

[oubtain] 



KOR.— The historj of this play is t^: On the Hiffhwrng wss 
wTiUan m mrlj as 1884, bat wm forbidden hj fiussian eensonldp 
and almost lost. When ChekhoT's literajj ezeentors were gathering 
material for a posthnmoos Tolnme published in 1914, the eensor's eopj 
of the play was diseorered bj mere chance^ its existenfe not haring 
been suspected even hj the author's intimate literary friends. The 
manuscript still bore the offieial disi^robation — ^'^ Found unit for 
presentation. Septemlm 20, 1885.'^ This translation has been made 
from tiie posthumous yolume aforementioned (edited by OmUiot's 
wife and published at Moseow).^D. A. M. 



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February 5th. 
The Fear Market; The Nation, February 3rd. 
Margeret SchMer, and Moonlight Mary; The Nation, Feb- 
ruary 10th. 
John Ferguson, and Macbeth; The Nation, February 17th. 
The Earth, Any House, The Melody of Youih, and The 

Winter Garden; The Nation, February 24th. 
Current Productions in London ; Athenaeum, February. 
In and About the Theatre ; Vanity Fair, February. 
Seen on the Stage, by Clayton Hamilton ; Vogue, February 

Ist 
Seen on the stage, by Clayton Hamilton ; Vogue, February 

15th. 
The Heart of Wetona, and Pay Day; Life, March 16th. 
Henry VIII; Life, March 30th. 
The Earth, and The Melody of Youth; Harper's Weekly, 

March 4th. 
Wetona, and Pay Day; Harper's Weekly, March 11th. 
The Oreaiest Nation, Pay Day, The Heart of Wetona, and 

Ponv-Pom; The Nation, March 9th. 
Li and About the Theatres; Vanity Fair, March. 
Seen on the Stage, by Clayton Hamilton; Vogue, March 

1st. 
Seen on the Stage, by Clayton Hamilton; Vogue, March 

15th. 
Margeret SchiUer; North American Review, March. 
Major Barbara, and Grotesques; Current Opinion, March. 
The New Plays; The Theatre, March. 



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328 RECENT MAGAZINE ARTICLES 

REVIEWS OP THE PRINTED PLAT AND BOOKS 
ON THE THEATRE: 

Is There a Shakespearean Problem t (G. G. Greenwood); 

North American Review, January, 
life of Shakespeare (Sidney Lee) ; Contemporary Review, 

January. 
Life of Shakespeare (Sidney Lee), and The Real Osear 

Wilde (Sherard) ; The Dial, January 6th. 
The Wagnerian Drama (Houston Chamberlain) ; The Dial, 

January 20th. 
Tales from Old Dramas (A. Miyamori) ; The Nation, Jan- 
uary 13th. 
Contemporary French Dramatists (Barrett Clark), and 

Pour Plays by Augier (Barrett Clark) ; The Nation, 

January 27th. 
Old Boston Museum Days (Eate Ryan) ; The Nation, Jan- 
uary 6th. 
You Can't Have It Both Ways (Anonymous), by Q. BL; 

The New Republic, February 26th. 
Another Book on the Theatre (George Jean Nathan) ; The 

Dial, February 17th. 
The Case of American Drama (Thomas H. Dickinson); 

The Nation, February 3rd. 
The Pathos of Proximity, by Alexander S. Eaun (rev. of 

the Ravenna Edition of Oscar Wilde's Works) ; The 

Little Review, January-February. 
John M. Synge: A Few Personal Recollections (John 

Masefleld) ; The Dial, March 6th. 



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NOTEWORTHY 

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ObOttlM mwa&igb. mad BAwwA BO* BiMrvtedTfl 

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who is the central character. His name, Calvin, has a dramatic 
significance. There is abundant plot and counterplot and the 
gentler influences of a woman and of a child (the latter does 
not appear), are vital factors. There is also no little humor. 

\ says in his 



lata wardsm of War I 

ue; Just as in a differ- 



in troductory note: **>iinfshmeirt rings true; 

ent field and dealing with quite another branch of the problem 
Galsworthy's Jnattoe rings true. This play is not unworihy 
of a place beside that bitter masterpiece." 



aPsvotval WUde^a OOWrmmaOMA^ with THa Tllllam Im tha Vlaoa 
(burlesque); Aooocdlair to Davwlm (ironical tragedyin 2 scenes) : 
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(Christmas episode). 11.20 net 

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are those of most interest today, the treatment is fresh and 
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a second edition. 

CNo. WAdleton's 



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Mew Tock Times' Book Barlswi "The whole is easily 
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world as we know it • • • in their supreme dramatic crisis 
• • • curiously able to hold the attention." 



B'Azey llaokars OOSTViaUi AMD SOanBT for 

tears. By the author of Sow to Vrodnoa Children's lajs, 
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MR. ALFRED FOWLER begs to announce that he 
will, in the near future, present the initial number 
of a quarterly publication to be called The Quarterly 
Notebook. 

The initial number will present a paper by Mr. Blaikie- 
Murdoch entitled Homage to Watteau; a Noh play, Awoi 
No Uye, arranged, and with an introduction by Mr. Ezra 
Pound, an interesting bit of Stevensoniana entitled. The 
Man Who Saved Stevenson, and other features. 

Mr. John Masefield will be the subject of a brilliant 
critical essay in the second number, supplemented by a 
paper on Ivories and an essay entitled, Synge and Bor- 
row: A Contrast in Method, 

Subscription: $i.oo per year; single copies, 25 cents. 

THE QUARTERLY NOTEBOOK 
17 Board of Trade BuOding, Kansas City, Missouri, U. S. A. 



The Teaching of English 

Bverybody is concened wlUi the ImproremeDt of instractton In the 
▼emacular. Srerybody will Bee at a glance, therefore, the Importance of 

THE ENGLISH JOURNAL 

This iB a magazine published each month, except in Jolj and 
August, under the editorial management of James Fleming Hosic and 
a group of associates in the National Council of Teachers of Kngitah. 
Besides leading articles, the following departments are maintained: 
The Round Table, Editorial, News and Notes, Digest of Periodicals, 
Book Reviews, Book Notices. Nothing of Importance relating to Rngllah 
in schools and colleges fails to appear or be referred to. 

The timeliness of the magaiine Is Indicated by the following titles 
of contributions to current numbers: The Shakespeare Tercentenary 
and the Schools, by Percival Chubb. Shakespeare In the Schotds, ^ 
Franklin T. Baker. The Production of Plays in the High School, by O. 
B. Sperlin. A May Day Masque, by Lynn H. Harris. A Merry Meeting 
at the Mermaid, a play, by Hermine Foelske. Student Newspaper Work, 
by Harriet A. Lee. The Bfflclent High School Library, by £mma J. 
Breck. Vocal Training in the Secondary Schools, by WUiiam H. Daiis. 
Poetry and the Filipinos, by Philip Stevens. 

The teachers who read the Bnglish Journal are said to be enterpris- 
ing, hopeful, and ef&cient. There ought not to be any other kind. 

Send $2.50 for an annual subscription or 80 cents for a single copy. 

Address: THE ENGLISH JOURNAL 
68th St. & Stewart Ave. Chicago, Illinois 



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IN THE MAY FORUM 

There are some things that the readers 
of THE DRAMA mast read 



CHIEF MMONO THEM ARE: 
THB MAGICAL CITY, a Play in One Act, 

by ZOE AKINS, author of "Papa: an Amorality 
Play/' 

The Magical City is now being presented at the 
Bandbox Theatre, New York. 

RSMY de GOURMONrS CRITICISM OP MORALITY, 

by ROBERT ALLERTON PARKER. 

The first interpretation printed in America of 
de Gourmont's destructive analysis of conventional 
morality. 

AT THE END OP THE ROAD, an wuisual short story, 
by Walter J. Muilenburg. 

-MORITURI SALUTAMUS.- 

by WILLARD HUNTINGTON WRIGHT. 
A diatribe against modern academic painting. 

HENRY JAMES: AN APPRECIATION, 
by ANNA LEACH. 

A charming tribute to America's great writer. 

THE MODERN SOCIAL RELIGION, 

by HORACE HOLLEY. 

A beautifully written essay. 

A group of striking poems, 

by Edna St. Vincent Millay. 




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POETRY 

A MAGAZINE OF VERSE 

543 CASS STREET. CHICAGO 



Padraic Colum, the distingnished Irish poet and lecturer, says: 
"POETRY is the best magazine, by far, in the English language. 
We have nothing in England or Ireland to compare with iL 

William Marion Reedy, Editor of the St Louis Mirror, says: 
"POETRY has been responsible for the Renaissance in that art. 
You have done a great service to the children of light in this 
country." 

CAN YOU AFFORD TO DO WITHOUT SO IMPOR- 
TANT A MAGAZINE? 

POETRY publishes the best verse now being written in Eng- 
lish, and its prose section contains brief articles on subjects con- 
nected with the art, also reviews of the new verse. 

POETRY has introduced more new poets of importance than 
all the other American magazines combined, besides publishing 
the work of poets already distinguished. 

THE MAGAZINE THAT RIGHTFULLY STANDS AT 
THE HEAD OF THE NEW MOVEMENT.— ATw York Sun. 

SUBSCRIBE AT ONCE. A subscription to POETRY is the 
best way of paying interest on your huge debt to the great poets 
of the past It encourages living poets to do for the future what 
dead poets have done for modem civilization, for you. 

One year— 12 numbers— U. S. A., $1.50; Canada, $1.65; for- 
eign, $1.75 (7 shillings). 

POETRY, 

543 Cass Street, Chicago. 

Send POETRY for one year ($1.50 enclosed) beginning 

to 



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THE LITTLE REVIEW I 

Literature Drama Music Art 

MARGARET C. ANDERSON 

XDITOK 



npHE LITTLE REVIEW is a mag- 
azine that believes in Life for 
Art*8 sake, in the Individual rather 
than in Incomplete people, in an age 
of Imagination rather than of Rea- 
sonableness; a magazine that believes 
in Ideas even if they are not Ulti- 
mate Conclusions, and values its 
Ideals so greatly as to live them; a 
magazine interested in Past, Present, 
and Future, but particularly in the 
New Hellenism; a magazine written 
for Intelligent people who can Feel; 
whose philosophy is Applied An- 
archism, whose policy is a Will to 
Splendor of Life, and whose func- 
tion is — to express itself. 

i 834 FINE ARTS BUILDING : CHICAGO i 

15 CBNT8 A COPY $1M A TSAB < 



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WewiUpay 

for copies of back numbers 

14» 15, 17 and 18 

The Drama League of America 

1145-46 Marquette Bldg. 

Chicago 



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